Galaxy S III bug bypasses lockscreen, allowing access to all personal data

Samsung Galaxy S III pebble blue (STOCK)

The lockscreen on your phone may not be doing a good job of keeping intruders out. A new bug has been found on the Galaxy S III that can let users bypass the lockscreen and access all phone functions, and we've just confirmed its efficacy on a Sprint version of the device running Android 4.1.1. To get in, one need only click the emergency call button followed by "emergency contacts." Once there, if one clicks the physical home button followed quickly by the power button, the lockscreen will disappear when you wake the phone again. It requires a bit of timing, but we were able to successfully reproduce the bug, which was first discovered by Sean McMillan, without much difficulty. After bypassing the lockscreen using the bug, it remained disabled until the phone was rebooted. The security offered by lockscreens has been challenged before, with users finding bugs in the systems like one recently found in iOS 6.1 that also leveraged the emergency dialer. We have reached out to Samsung for comment.

The Verge
Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.



Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.