How to Detect SU Binaries on Android Apps

Last updated December 6, 2023 by Appdome

Learn to Detect SU Binaries in Android apps, in mobile CI/CD with a Data-Driven DevSecOps™ build system.

What are SU Binaries?

SU Binaries, also referred to as “SuperUser” or simply “SU”, are a key component of Android root access. When an Android device is “rooted,” the user obtains enhanced (super user) permissions, allowing them to modify or access system components that would otherwise be restricted. These elevated permissions are made possible by the SU binary.

Why Detect SU Binaries in Android Apps?

If an Android device has root access, it can bypass system security mechanisms, alter system settings, remove or modify system apps, and install malicious software without the user’s knowledge. This can expose the user’s private data and render the device vulnerable to a wide range of attacks such as memory dumping, debugging, stealing of data and much more. Detecting SU binaries ensures that apps function as intended and that the user data remains secure.

Prerequisites for Using Detect SU Binaries :

To use Appdome’s mobile app security build system to Detect SU Binaries , you’ll need:

Detect SU Binaries on Android apps using Appdome

On Appdome, follow these 3 simple steps to create self-defending Android Apps that Detect SU Binaries without an SDK or gateway:

  1. Upload the Mobile App to Appdome.

    1. Upload an app to Appdome’s Mobile App Security Build System

    2. Upload Method: Appdome Console or DEV-API
    3. Android Formats: .apk or .aab
    4. Detect SU Binaries Compatible With: Java, JS, C++, C#, Kotlin, Flutter, React Native, Unity, Xamarin, Cordova and other Android apps
  2. Build the feature: Detect SU Binaries .

    1. Building Detect SU Binaries by using Appdome’s DEV-API:

      1. Create and name the Fusion Set (security template) that will contain the Detect SU Binaries feature as shown below:
      2. fusion set that contains Detect SU Binaries

        Figure 1: Fusion Set that will contain the Detect SU Binaries feature
        Note: Naming the Fusion Set to correspond to the protection(s) selected is for illustration purposes only (not required).

      3. Follow the steps in Sections 2.2.1-2.2.2 of this article, Building the Detect SU Binaries feature via Appdome Console, to add the Detect SU Binaries feature to this Fusion Set.

      4. Open the Fusion Set Detail Summary by clicking the “...” symbol on the far-right corner of the Fusion Set, as shown in Figure 1 above, and get the Fusion Set ID from the Fusion Set Detail Summary (as shown below): fusion Set Detail Summary image

        Figure 2: Fusion Set Detail Summary
        Note: Annotating the Fusion Set to identify the protection(s) selected is optional only (not mandatory).

      5. Follow the instructions below to use the Fusion Set ID inside any standard mobile DevOps or CI/CD toolkit like Bitrise, App Center, Jenkins, Travis, Team City, Cirlce CI or other system:
        1. Build an API for the app – for instructions, see the tasks under Appdome API Reference Guide
        2. Look for sample APIs in Appdome’s GitHub Repository
    2. Building the Detect SU Binaries feature via Appdome Console

      To build the Detect SU Binaries protection by using Appdome Console, follow the instructions below.

      1. Where: Inside the Appdome Console, go to Build > Security Tab > OS Integrity section.
      2. When you select the Detect SU Binaries you'll notice that your Fusion Set you created in step 2.1.1 now bears the icon of the protection category that contains Detect SU Binaries

        Fusion Set applied Detect SU Binaries

        Figure 4: Fusion Set that displays the newly added Detect SU Binaries protection

      3. Click Build My App at the bottom of the Build Workflow (shown in Figure 3).
    Congratulations!  The Detect SU Binaries protection is now added to the mobile app
  3. Certify the Detect SU Binaries feature in Android Apps.

    After building Detect SU Binaries , Appdome generates a Certified Secure™ certificate to guarantee that the Detect SU Binaries protection has been added and is protecting the app. To verify that the Detect SU Binaries protection has been added to the mobile app, locate the protection in the Certified Secure™ certificate as shown below: Detect SU Binaries  shown in Certificate secure

    Figure 5: Certified Secure™ certificate

    Each Certified Secure™ certificate provides DevOps and DevSecOps organizations the entire workflow summary, audit trail of each build, and proof of protection that Detect SU Binaries has been added to each Android app. Certified Secure provides instant and in-line DevSecOps compliance certification that Detect SU Binaries and other mobile app security features are in each build of the mobile app

Using Appdome, there are no development or coding prerequisites to build secured Android Apps by using Detect SU Binaries . There is no SDK and no library to code or implement in the app and no gateway to deploy in your network. All protections are built into each app and the resulting app is self-defending and self-protecting.

Releasing and Publishing Mobile Apps with Detect SU Binaries

After successfully securing your app by using Appdome, there are several available options to complete your project, depending on your app lifecycle or workflow. These include:

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If you have any questions, please send them our way at or via the chat window on the Appdome platform.

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