BlackBerry releases security patches for the PRIV Android phone

Graham Cluley
Graham Cluley
@[email protected]

BlackBerry PRIVBack in September I upset some BlackBerry fanboys by taking the mickey out of John Chen, CEO of the beleaguered smartphone company, and his cringeworthy demo of the firm’s first Android-powered device – the BlackBerry PRIV.

The problem was that Chen utterly failed to explain why the PRIV would be better than other Android phones for security and privacy.

If you missed it, you can check out my take on Chen’s bumbling BlackBerry PRIV demo below.

Who cares about privacy? The BlackBerry Priv runs Google! | Graham Cluley

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Well, now the BlackBerry PRIV is out and this week it has received its first of what are planned to be monthly updates – improving stability, fixing some bugs and (most importantly) patching some security vulnerabilities in the Android operating system.

The update is available now for everyone who purchased their PRIV through ShopBlackBerry and, according to the firm, will be available to carrier-purchased PRIVs from December 7th.

In a blog post, BlackBerry describes the process of installing the free update:

  • Connect to a Wi-Fi network.
  • Go to Settings -> About -> System Updates and tap the “Check for Updates” button.
  • Choose to apply the update, and allow it to start downloading in the background.
  • When finished, restart your phone.

It’s great to see BlackBerry issue monthly updates for its Android device, and follow in the footsteps of other leading phone manufacturers who have committed to pushing out more regular security patches since scares like the Stagefright exploit.

Let’s hope that more manufacturers and carriers join in, as currently this is a big reason to be wary of buying some Android devices.

Of course, there’s a whole other discussion which could be had about why – if you care about privacy – you would run a smartphone running an operating system built by a huge advertising company, but maybe we should have that on another day…

Be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel if you want to see more of the same (my videos, not terrible BlackBerry product demos).

Graham Cluley is an award-winning keynote speaker who has given presentations around the world about cybersecurity, hackers, and online privacy. A veteran of the computer security industry since the early 1990s, he wrote the first ever version of Dr Solomon's Anti-Virus Toolkit for Windows, makes regular media appearances, and is the co-host of the popular "Smashing Security" podcast. Follow him on Twitter, Mastodon, Threads, Bluesky, or drop him an email.

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