On November 14, 2023, a wave of concern swept over the researchers at the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). They discovered a worrying issue: budget Android devices, particularly the Dragon Touch KidzPad Y88X 10 tablet, were riddled with pre-installed malware and outdated parental control software. This posed a significant risk to parents aiming to provide their children with safe technological experiences.
Alex Hancock, a diligent researcher at EFF, illuminated the root of these issues. He highlighted that manufacturers often prioritize cost over security, and the online vendor market lacks stringent quality checks.
This problem was not confined to the Dragon Touch tablet but was a widespread issue plaguing many Android products, including Android TV boxes.
Upon further investigation, the EFF researchers discovered that the Dragon Touch tablet was burdened with outdated and potentially harmful software. This is a recurring issue in budget Android devices, which often run on custom versions of Android that are more susceptible to malware and other security threats. Moreover, the pre-installed apps on these devices are rarely updated, leaving them wide open to exploits.
DRAGON TOUCH A DEVICE MADE FOR CHILDREN:
The Dragon Touch device, designed for children, was riddled with security loopholes. It came with the KIDOZ app pre-installed, an app notorious for collecting and transmitting device information to its servers.
The EFF report also revealed the presence of the Corejava malware in the Android OS directory of the device. These findings painted a grim picture of the manufacturer’s negligence, allowing these vulnerabilities to persist by pre-installing outdated and potentially harmful apps.
ROLES OF MANUFACTURERS IN ADRESSING SECURITY ISSUES:
This situation serves as a stark reminder of the crucial role manufacturers play in addressing these issues. They should bear the responsibility to guarantee improved security and privacy for their customers, particularly when their products are designed for children. It also highlights the need for consumers to be vigilant, to research the manufacturer and device thoroughly before making a purchase.
The open-source nature of the Android OS suggests that these issues are not limited to the Dragon Touch tablet or specific brands and models. Other devices in the market may also be vulnerable to similar threats, emphasizing the importance of keeping software up-to-date and regularly monitoring devices for any suspicious activity.
As of the time this article was published, the Dragon Touch tablet has been pulled from the shelves of both Walmart and Amazon online stores. We at Fixitgearware, urge parents to prioritize their children’s safety when introducing them to technology. After all, in this digital age, a little caution can go a long way in safeguarding our loved ones. Stay safe! 🛡️
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