# Jadx - decompiler gui
# Jadx - decomp cli (with deobf)
jadx -d path/to/extract/ --deobf app_name.apk
# Apkx decompiler
apkx example.apk
# Apktool
apktool d app_name.apk

Get sensitive info

# Analyze URLs in apk:
python -p ~/Downloads/app-debug.apk
# Get endpoints from apk:
./ ~/any.apk | grep -oP '(?<=:)[^ ]*'
# Get url from apk:
apktool d app.apk -o folder; grep -Phro "(https?://)[\w\.-/]+[\"'\`]" folder/ | sed 's#"##g' | anew | grep -v "w3\|android\|github\|\|google\|"
# Urls and secrets
python -f ~/path/to/file.apk
# Quick wins tool
slicer -d path/to/extact/apk
# Unpack apk and find interesting strings
apktool d app_name.apk
grep -EHirn "accesskey|admin|aes|api_key|apikey|checkClientTrusted|crypt|http:|https:|password|pinning|secret|SHA256|SharedPreferences|superuser|token|X509TrustManager|insert into" APKfolder/
# Regex FCM Server Keys for push notification services control
# FCM Google Server Keys Validation
python3 file.apk
# Manifest.xml findings:
android:allowBackup = TRUE
android:debuggable = TRUE
andorid:exported= TRUE or not set (within <provider>-Tag) --> allows external app to access data
android.permission.WRITE_EXTERNAL_STORAGE / READ_EXTERNAL_STORAGE (ONLY IF sensitive data was stored/read externally)
Use of permissions
e.g. the app opens website in external browser (not inApp), however requires "android.permission.INTERNET" --> false usage of permissions. (over-privileged)
"android:protectionLevel" was not set properly (<permission android:name="my_custom_permission_name" android:protectionLevel="signature"/>)
missing android:permission (permission tags limit exposure to other apps)

Static analyzers

# Android Malware Analyzer
pipenv shell
quark -a test.apk -r rules/ --detail
# Androtickler
java -jar AndroTickler.jar
python -f /root/android.apk
# MobSF
- Findings:
Cleartext credentials (includes base64 encoded or weak encrypted ones)
Credentials cracked (brute-force, guessing, decrypted with stored cryptographic-key, ...)
File permission MODE_WORLD_READABLE / MODE_WORLD_WRITEABLE (other apps/users are able to read/write)
If http is in use (no SSL)
Anything that shouldn't be there (debug info, comments wiht info disclosure, ...)

Manual analysis (adb, frida, objection, etc...)

# Good Checklist
# Adb
adb connect IP:PORT/ID
adb devices
adb shell
adb push
adb install
adb shell pm list packages # List all installed packages
# DeviceId
adb shell
settings get secure android_id
adb shell sqlite3 /data/data/ "select value from secure where name = 'android_id'"
# Frida (rooted device method)
adb root
adb push /root/Downloads/frida-server-12.7.24-android-arm /data/local/tmp/. # Linux
adb push C:\Users\username\Downloads\frida-server-12.8.11-android-arm /data/local/tmp/. # Windows
adb root
adb shell "chmod 755 /data/local/tmp/frida-server && /data/local/tmp/frida-server &"
frida-ps -U # Check frida running correctly
# Run Frida script
frida -U -f -l PATH\fridaScript.js --no-pause
# Easy way to load Frida Server in Rooted Device
# Frida (NON rooted device) a.k.a. patch the apk
# a) Lief injector method
# b) Objection and dalvik bytecode method
# Frida resources
# Objection
objection --gadget explore
# Android Backup files (*.ab files)
( printf "\x1f\x8b\x08\x00\x00\x00\x00\x00" ; tail -c +25 backup.ab ) | tar xfvz -
# Useful apps:
# Xposed Framework
# RootCloak
# SSLUnpinning
# Check Info Stored
find /data/app -type f -exec grep --color -Hsiran "FINDTHIS" {} \;
find /storage/sdcard0/Android/ -maxdepth 7 -exec ls -dl \{\} \;
# Check logs during app usage
# Download apks

Burp Cert Installation > Android 7.0

# Export only certificate in burp as DER format
openssl x509 -inform DER -in cacert.der -out cacert.pem
export CERT_HASH=$(openssl x509 -inform PEM -subject_hash_old -in cacert.pem | head -1)
adb root && adb remount
adb push cacert.pem "/sdcard/${CERT_HASH}.0"
adb shell su -c "mv /sdcard/${CERT_HASH}.0 /system/etc/security/cacerts"
adb shell su -c "chmod 644 /system/etc/security/cacerts/${CERT_HASH}.0"
rm -rf cacert.*
# Reboot device


- AndroidManifest.xml (basically a blueprint for the application)
Find exported components, api keys, custom deep link schemas, schema endpoints etc.
- resources.arsc/strings.xml
Developers are encouraged to store strings in this file instead of hard coding in application.
- res/xml/file_paths.xml
Shows file save paths.
- Search source code recursively
Especially BuildConfig files.
- Look for firebase DB:
Decompiled apk: Resources/resources.arsc/res/values/strings.xml, search for "" and try to access:
API Keys:
- String references in Android Classes
cmVzb3VyY2VzX3lv is the string resource label.
- Find these string references in strings.xml
- Piece together the domains and required params in source code
Exported components:
- Activities - Entry points for application interactions of components specified in AndroidManifest.xml.
Has several states managed by callbacks such as onCreate().
→ Access to protected intents via exported Activities
One exported activity that accepts a user provided intent can expose protected intents.
→ Access to sensitive data via exported Activity
Often combined with deep links to steal data via unvalidated parameters. Write session tokens to an
external file.
→ Access to sensitive files, stealing files, replacing imported files via exported Activities
external-files-path, external-path
Public app directories
→ Look for "content://" in source code
- Service - Supplies additional functionality in the background.
→ Custom file upload service example that is vulnerable because android:exported="true". When exported by third party
applications can send data to the service or steal sensitive data from applications depending on the services function. Check if params and intent data can be set with proof of concept application.
- Broadcast receivers - Receives broadcasts from events of interest. Usually specified broadcasted intents in the broadcast receiver activity.
→ Vulnerable when receiver is exported and accepts user provided broadcasts.
→ Any application, including malicious ones, can send an intent to this broadcast receiver causing it to be triggered without any restrictions.
- Content providers - Helps applications manage access to stored data and ways to share data with other Android applications
→ Content providers that connect to sqlite can be exploited via SQL injection by third party apps.
Deep links
- In Android, a deep link is a link that takes you directly to a specific destination within an app.
- Think of deep links as Android urls to specific parts of the application.
- Usually mirrors web application except with a different schema that navigate directory to specific Android activities.
- Verified deep links can only use http and https schemas. Sometimes developers keep custom schemas for testing new
- Type of vulnerabilities are based on how the scheme://, host://, and parameters are validated
→ CSRF - Test when autoVerify=”true” is not present in AndroidManifest.xml It’s easier.
→ Open redirect - Test when custom schemes do not verify endpoint parameters or hosts
→ XSS - Test when endpoint parameters or host not validated, addJavaScriptInterface and
→ setJavascriptEnabled(true); is used.
→ LFI - Test when deep link parameters aren’t validated. appschema://app/goto?file=
Database encryption
- Check database is encrypted under /data/data/<package_name>/
- Check in source code for database credentials
Allowed backup
- Lead to sensitive information disclosure
- adb backup
Logging Enabled
- Check logcat when login and any action performed
Storing Sensitive Data in External Storage
- Check data stored after usage /sdcard/android/data/
Weak Hashing Algorithms
- MD5 is a weak algorythm and have collisions
Predictable Random Number Generator (PRNG)
- The java.util.Random function is predictable
Hard-coded Data
- Hard-coded user authentication information (credentials, PINs, etc.)
- Hard-coded cryptographic keys.
- Hard-coded keys used for encrypted databases.
- Hard-coded API keys/private
- Hard-coded keys that have been encoded or encrypted (e.g. base64 encoded, XOR encrypted, etc.).
- Hard-coded server IP addresses.
Debug Mode enabled
- Start a shell on Android and gain an interactive shell with run-as command
- run-as
- adb exec-out run-as cat databases/appName > appNameDB-copy
If you get built-in WebView and try to access:
If install apk in Genymotion fails with "INSTALL_FAILED_NO_MATCHING_ABIS":
- Apk is compiled only for ARM
- Download zip for your Android version here
- Move zip to VM and flash