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Book Review

Book Review: Bulletproof Android

Practical Advice for Building Secure Apps

Sometimes I really annoy myself. When I received this book I was already reading Android Hacker's Handbook. When I saw the size of it, I put it on the bottom of the pile of books in my reading queue. I then got Android Security Internals and that was not a quick read.

I am glad I finally picked this one up off the pile. For a small book, it contains a ton of great information. In the first chapter they introduce several security guidelines including PCI Mobile Payment Acceptance Security Guidelines, Google Security, HIPAA Secure, OWASP Top 10 Mobile Risks (2014), and Forrester Research’s Top 10 Nontechnical Security Issues in Mobile App Development.

I have listed the chapters below.

1. Android Security Issues
2. Protecting Your Code
3. Authentication
4. Network Communication
5. Android Databases
6. Web Server Attacks
7. Third-Party Library Integration
8. Device Security
9. The Future

The book is very concise, but the author targets topics that can be taught in short to the point chapters. For example, Chapter 2 does an awesome job of introducing obfuscation, covering the different types, and then showing us how to use ProGuard and DexGuard. The chapter concludes by showing the differences of what you can accomplish with decompiling and disassembling.

This book is different from the other Android security books I have read because it is not a book for the hacker, it is more of a book for the architect and developer. It is a book about the tools available to protect your application, not break your application.

It is also about the best practices that are available for us to follow in order to achieve a stable and secure application. Although the other books I have read were fun, this one applied more to what I need to know to do my daily job. I don't go to work to hack applications, I go there to build safe and secure ones.

The code that comes with the book is great. Best of all, it just opens, builds, and runs in Android Studio. I have been using ADT, but just recently made the switch to Android Studio. This is the first Android book that has come with code that just ran for me, and was also actually worth running and digging into.

The author's writing style makes the book an easy cover to cover read. It was also nice to have a small book to carry around for once.

I highly recommend this book to any architect or developer that is interested in learning more about Android security topics for the architect and developer.


Bulletproof Android: Practical Advice for Building Secure Apps (Developer's Library)

Bulletproof Android: Practical Advice for Building Secure Apps (Developer's Library)

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Tad Anderson has been doing Software Architecture for 18 years and Enterprise Architecture for the past few.