With all the rumors of Governments, social networks and hackers spying on users, we could certainly use some extra security.

Pry-Fi Android

Pry-Fi is an application developed by the developer of SuperSU, Chainfire, and it does help your device from being spied on, to a certain extent.

Chainfire explains that all Android devices broadcast some information to whomever is in range, even when your Wi-Fi is turned off. This can actually be to used to track repeated visits and your exact movements in an area under surveillance. This happens because of background network scanning, which most users do not use, or even are aware of.

So, you could turn off your Wi-Fi and disable the background scanning, but that has a huge disadvantage. Your device will not connect to known networks automatically, or even use location-aware apps, for example: Weather apps or social apps like FourSquare.

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Pry-Fi prevents this unwanted broadcasting by your device in a unique way, while your Wi-Fi is still on and has background scanning enabled. When you are not connected to a Wi-Fi network, the app will  constantly pseudo-randomize the device’s MAC address. This will fool trackers into thinking that the spoofed MAC address is real, where as in reality, they will not encounter your MAC address again. You can also enable an option in the app which allows your MAC address to be randomized everytime you connect to a network.

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Pry-Fi Android 2

Pry-Fi also has a War mode, which when enabled emulates your device as dozens of people, thus poisoning your tracker’s database. This is effective if you walk around an area where Wi-Fi is under surveillance.

While the device itself  may not be tracker-proof, it is possible that with apps like Pry-Fi , we could get the well deserved privacy that Governments seem to deny us.

The application is still in an early stage and may have a few bugs.

Here is a list of the known issues in the app:

– Requires SuperSU ?
It’s tested against SuperSU, and uses some features that may not be available in other root management apps. Depending on both your Android and root management app version it may or may not work.

– Using the Android Wi-Fi settings is weird
Pry-Fi does a lot of event-based Wi-Fi on/off switching and connecting/disconnecting. So if you go to settings and turn Wi-Fi on or off, add a network, etc, the interface may start looking as if it has gone mad for a few seconds. Don’t worry, this is expected behavior.

– Connecting to a Wi-Fi network (either a new one or a previously known one) is slower
Yes. Indeed.

– Forgetting networks
You can’t just forget a network from the normal Android Wi-Fi settings. If Pry-Fi is enabled, you need to use the in-app network management tool to forget a network.

– Multiple known networks (to-do)
If you scans result in multiple networks the device knows the passwords for, behavior is undefined. Needs more testing/development.

– Hidden networks
It doesn’t currently work with hidden SSIDs, and it won’t in the future.

– Wi-Fi Direct (to-do)
Behavior is undefined. Pry-Fi probably heavily interferes with this. Needs more testing/development.

– Beam, S Share, etc
Some methods that quickly share data between two Android devices that are close, tapped together, etc, make use of Wi-Fi Direct, and may thus be negatively affected by Pry-Fi.

– Authentication errors
If the Wi-Fi settings keep claiming authentication errors, your device may not actually support changing the MAC address, and Pry-Fi may not be for you… this doesn’t have to be the issue, but it is one of the indicators.

You can download Pry-Fi for free from Google Play:

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[app]eu.chainfire.pryfi[/app]

It also has an optional IAP for the pro version. However, all features are already available in the free version.

 


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