P-lint: a permission smell detector for android applications


—Android is built upon a permission-based structure, where apps require access to specific permissions in order to carry out specific functionalities. While Android has provided a set of best practices intended to aid the developer in properly defining and manipulating these permissions on their source code, developers do not always adhere to these guidelines. Although some of the resulting issues may be minor and lead to slight user confusion, other mistakes may create more serious privacy and security related issues. We’ve defined improper usage of these permission best practices to be permission smells to indicate possible permissions related syntactic issues and have created a tool P-Lint to assist in the identification of these smells on the source code. P-Lint’s goal is to not only help developers create better, more secure apps by providing guidance on properly using permissions, but also in allowing researchers to better understand the common permission smells through empirical analysis on existing apps. P-Lint is publicly available on the project website: https://p-lint.github.io

2017 IEEE/ACM 4th International Conference on Mobile Software Engineering and Systems (MOBILESoft)
Mohamed Wiem Mkaouer
Mohamed Wiem Mkaouer
Assistant Professor of Software Engineering

Research interests software refactoring and quality.