Detecting GPS information leakage in Android applications

Siyuan Ma, Zhushou Tang, Qiuyu Xiao, Jiafa Liu, Tran Triet Duong, Xiaodong Lin, Haojin Zhu
2013 2013 IEEE Global Communications Conference (GLOBECOM)  
Location Based Service(LBS) becomes very popular in mobile computing platforms, such as Android. However, it could also leak highly personal information about the phone owner if used by Malwares. It has been witnessed that an increased number of malicious Android applications use LBS to obtain users' locations and transmit them to attackers without users' acknowledgement, causing users' privacy breach. In this paper, we first discuss the common way in which privacy can be breached in Android
more » ... lications, and then define a classification algorithm for GPS information leakage. Furthermore, we develop a location information leakage detection tool named Brox. Brox is based on dalvik-opcode specification, which uses data flow analysis framework equipped with flowsensitive, context-sensitive, and inter-procedure techniques to detect potential information leakage path in Android malicious applications. Specifically, Brox uses inter-procedure analysis and dependency calculation to understand the intention for each sensitive operation; by using reachable analysis, connection between privacy access operation and leakage operation is established. More importantly, Brox confirms whether the sending out operation contains location information or not using static taint analysis. At last, we classify the detection results with the help of identification of interaction and non-user interaction entry points in order to discover stealthy leaks of GPS location. The extensive examination results show that the proposed method can effectively detect privacy leakage in Android applications with a high accuracy rate.
doi:10.1109/glocom.2013.6831175 dblp:conf/globecom/MaTXLDLZ13 fatcat:qsdqm6ywvja7rb3gohadiws4qy