The upcoming version of Google’s Android operating system is set to arrive with data encryption options turned on by default. While there has been no official statement made by the company, a spokesman informed the Washington Post that it is working on getting the feature to work right out of the box.
Mobile encryption is a massive issue in the United States as the country debates the legal status of searching smartphones for evidence. In many cases the police require a warrant to access this information, although companies are moving towards encrypting their information so that even a court order will be unable to unlock a smartphone. At the centre of this movement was the revelations from Edward Snowden about the extensive government surveillance programme against citizens; which has brought many concerns about data privacy to the forefront. Recent celebrity iCloud account hacks have only served to increase concern about implementing security measures.
Apple had made the move to encrypt data earlier this week with the public release of iOS8. While the feature has not been highly publicised, users who have updated their iPhones and iPad to the latest operating system will now have their data on the device encrypted.
Android is catching up by implementing the feature in the upcoming Android L, although devices with the OS installed will not be appearing until later this year. There is also the concern of pushing the update to older devices, as many Android updates go through OEM’s to ensure that they are compatible with the wide variety of hardware.
Security conscious consumers should at least take heed of this news, as it will hopefully signal a future with fewer data leaks and more privacy.
[Source: The Washington Post]