Security on mobile phones is a matter for concern for all stakeholders, the users, the service providers or carriers, and the phone manufacturers. Google’s Android is the operating system on majority of smartphones in use around the world. Google sends a security update patch each month and the device makers and carriers reach it to the phones in the hands of the users. What if the inbuilt software can alert if something wrong is going on in the device? Well, Chinese giant Xiaomi says its on to something similar with its user interface for Android 10, MIUI 11. It could be a permanent feature for the successive versions of Android to be released in the coming years as well.
The broad contours of this feature will be that it will alert the user if it finds any app in use misbehaving from the security perspective. If an app auto-starts in the background or one app triggers opening another app without the user tapping on any icon, then the alert notification could appear. The same goes for apps asking for permissions to trace the location or other similar permissions. Users mechanically say yes on most occasions. If there is an alert, it could make it more moderated.
Xiaomi has listed the eventualities where its MIUI will raise the notification alert:
1. Recording audio in the background
2. Accessing calendar events
3. Accessing call history
4. Making a phone call
5. Taking photos or recording
6. Accessing or saving items to the clipboard
8. Accessing your
9. Reading your text
10. Accessing sensor
11. Accessing activity
12. Accessing device
13. Reading your phone
14. Accessing or saving files in the background
Now, for some users this may appear a little confusing and they may feel irritated if there are too many notifications. Xiaomi says it will provide an option to the user to pick and choose from the list above on what the user feels is a breach of the security of his/her device.
Xiaomi is currently testing this feature at its end. Once the results look convincing enough, it will include in the MIUI and send the updates to the Xiaomi models.