Latest Android bug can disable audio if you download a malicious file

A new bug has been found that can turn off all audio on your Android device running version 4.3 of the operating system or higher, but requires you to download a malicious file.

The bug can be triggered by a malicious app, or a purposefully-malformed MKV file. The bug triggers a buffer overflow in the mediaserver service, and the result is a stop to all audio on your phone or tablet. In some cases, the amount of RAM being used may be enough to cause the phone or tablet to become unresponsive.

Trend-Micro, vendors of a popular Android Antivirus application, submitted the bug to Google last May. Google marked the vulnerability as "low-priority" in accordance with their security vulnerability guidelines. Any reported and accepted vulnerability that can be fixed by a simple reboot of the device is classified as such. You can read more about Google's Severity ratings and associated consequences here.

Our recommendation — don't download files from people you do not trust, and you'll avoid this sort of issue. But if you do get hit by this particular vulnerability, just reboot your phone or tablet and delete the malicious file.

More: Trend Micro

Jerry Hildenbrand
Senior Editor — Google Ecosystem

Jerry is an amateur woodworker and struggling shade tree mechanic. There's nothing he can't take apart, but many things he can't reassemble. You'll find him writing and speaking his loud opinion on Android Central and occasionally on Twitter.