Critical Government Alert: Protecting Android 13 and Older Devices – Risks, Affected Devices, and Security Measures

In a world where our smartphones have become an essential part of our lives, it is crucial to ensure their security. Recently, the Indian government issued a critical warning for Android users, particularly those using Android versions 13 and older. This warning is significant, given the large number of Android users in India.


The vulnerabilities highlighted in the government’s warning could allow attackers to:

  • Gain elevated privileges on your device, giving them increased access and control.
  • Access sensitive information, such as passwords, photos, and financial information.
  • Cause denial-of-service conditions, rendering your device inoperable.
  • Install malicious software on your device.

Affected Devices

The vulnerabilities primarily affect Android devices running older versions of the operating system, specifically Android versions 11, 12, 12L, and 13.

List of Vulnerabilities Highlighted by CERT-In

For those curious about the specific vulnerabilities, here is the list of CVEs highlighted by CERT-In:

CVE-2020-29374, CVE-2022-34830, CVE-2022-40510, CVE-2023-20780, CVE-2023-20965, CVE-2023-21132, CVE-2023-21133, CVE-2023-21134, CVE-2023-21140, CVE-2023-21142, CVE-2023-21264, CVE-2023-21267, CVE-2023-21268, CVE-2023-21269, CVE-2023-21270, CVE-2023-21271, CVE-2023-21272, CVE-2023-21273, CVE-2023-21274, CVE-2023-21275, CVE-2023-21276, CVE-2023-21277, CVE-2023-21278, CVE-2023-21279, CVE-2023-21280, CVE-2023-21281, CVE-2023-21282, CVE-2023-21283, CVE-2023-21284, CVE-2023-21285, CVE-2023-21286, CVE-2023-21287, CVE-2023-21288, CVE-2023-21289, CVE-2023-21290, CVE-2023-21292, CVE-2023-21626, CVE-2023-22666, CVE-2023-28537, and CVE-2023-28555.

How to Protect Your Device

To protect your Android device from these vulnerabilities, you can take the following steps:

  • Apply security patches urgently: Google has released an update for the Android operating system that includes security patches to resolve the identified issues. It is crucial to update your device as soon as possible.
  • Keep your Android OS updated: Regularly updating your Android operating system is essential, as these updates include the latest security features and enhancements to help protect your device against known vulnerabilities.
  • Be cautious with app downloads: Only download and install apps from trusted sources, such as the Google Play Store. Avoid third-party apps and carefully review the permissions you grant to apps during installation.
  • Review app permissions: Periodically review the permissions granted to apps on your device and revoke any permissions that seem excessive or unnecessary.
  • Backup your data: Regularly back up your data to an external source or a cloud storage service to ensure that your valuable information remains safe, even in the face of unexpected incidents.


By following these simple steps, you can significantly reduce the risks and vulnerabilities your Android device faces, ensuring a safer and more secure digital experience.

Additional Tips

  • Use a strong PIN, password, or biometric lock on your device.
  • Enable two-factor authentication (2FA) for all of your online accounts.
  • Be careful about what links you click on and what attachments you open.
  • Install a mobile security app on your device.
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