OnePlus left EngineerMode APK in end user OxygenOS builds, easily rootable

OnePlus comes under scanner over the issue of users’ privacy

According to mobile security researcher Robert Baptiste-otherwise known by the pseudonym Elliot Alderson, a reference to the main character in the television series "Mr. Robot"-smartphones from OnePlus have for years contained a hidden backdoor that would allow root access to the device". Having root access essentially means the user has complete control over the device, including privileged control over features that would otherwise be locked up. Nonetheless, it's a backdoor many wouldn't want on their devices.

Hackers who get hold of some OnePlus phones can get virtually unlimited access its files and software through use of an testing tool called called EngineerMode the company evidently left on phones.

The developer, with the help of few cybersecurity experts, was able to discover the password and was able to root a OnePlus device with few commands.

If it's there, anyone with physical access to your device can exploit EngineerMode to gain root access on your smartphone.

This app is a system app made by @Qualcomm and customised by @OnePlus.

Taylor Swift's 'Reputation' Set To Become 2017's Best-Selling Album
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Entering the password into the EngineerMode app provides permanent root access to the Android Debug Bridge process. It has been found on the OnePlus 5, as well as the OnePlus 3 and 3T.

On devices with the application present, an attacker could use the easily crackable password to hijack the device and execute malicious code.

As the impending launch of the OnePlus 5T nears, the company has once again found itself the subject of controversy.

This nonetheless raises questions over why is the device shipping with this app (presumably it has just been overlooked) and whether it's available on other Qualcomm devices.

The inclusion of the app appears to be an oversight on the part of OnePlus, and company founder Carl Pei said the team is looking into it.

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