Are disabled apps insecure?

Gonoff

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Oct 29, 2011
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I look after a large number of Android tablets in a secure environment.
We use an MDM to limit use of things that are inappropriate or unsuitable for shared devices here.
I have now had it suggested that we disable those apps as well even though our users can't get at them. I note that when you disable something, it removes all the updates first. Does this make the devices less secure?
 

hallux

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Jul 7, 2013
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I would say they're reasonably safe. Disabled apps can't run (the point of disabling them), so it doesn't make much difference if the un-patched version is still hanging around with a security fault. If, in the future, you decide to allow those apps they absolutely should be forced to be updated though.
 

anony_mouse

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Aug 11, 2013
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Good question. I would have said there are no security problems because the apps are disabled which I would assume means they don't run at all.

However, I still sometimes get warnings saying "App X has stopped", even when app X is disabled. So I'm not sure how disabled they really are.
 

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