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Samsung pushes out urgent security fixes for phones: Update now

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra size
(Image credit: Future)

Samsung is already pushing out the September Android security updates to its flagship phones, just after Google disclosed the patches Tuesday (Sept. 8).

Android Police (opens in new tab) reports that some versions of the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, Note 9, Note 10, Note 20, Note 20 Ultra, S10, A21, A51 and A70 had as of Tuesday already received the updates, which vary from country to country, as part of Samsung's general software updates. 

Bleeping Computer (opens in new tab) reported yesterday (Sept. 9) that some Galaxy S10 5Gs were also getting the update.

Google's September Android security bulletin (opens in new tab) lists fixes for more than 50 security bugs, several of which are deemed "critical." The "most severe" one, according to the bulletin, is a Media Framework flaw that could let a malicious file hack into the device. Five other critical flaws affect phones using Broadcom chips.

Many of Samsung's top-end phones receive monthly security updates, including all Galaxy S, Galaxy Z and Galaxy Note phones released in the past three years. Midrange phones get the updates quarterly, and some flagships older than three years get relegated to quarterly updates for an additional year of support. The Samsung Mobile website has a full list of which Samsung models are on which update schedule (opens in new tab).

However, no Samsung phones will get the upgrade to Google's next mobile OS, Android 11, right away. That rolled out Tuesday to Google's own Pixel phones. Certain OnePlus, Oppo, RealMe and Xiaomi phones get an all-but-final beta version, but no Samsung models do.

Your Samsung phone should flash a screen notification that a software update is available. If you'd like to check manually, go to Settings > Software Update or Settings > About Device > Software Update, depending on your model.

Paul Wagenseil is a senior editor at Tom's Guide focused on security and privacy. He has also been a dishwasher, fry cook, long-haul driver, code monkey and video editor. He's been rooting around in the information-security space for more than 15 years at FoxNews.com, SecurityNewsDaily, TechNewsDaily and Tom's Guide, has presented talks at the ShmooCon, DerbyCon and BSides Las Vegas hacker conferences, shown up in random TV news spots and even moderated a panel discussion at the CEDIA home-technology conference. You can follow his rants on Twitter at @snd_wagenseil.