How to Encrypt Java Strings in Android Apps

Last updated August 11, 2022 by Appdome

Learn to Encrypt strings and resources in Android apps, in mobile CI/CD with a Data-Driven DevSecOps™ build system.

What are strings and resources?

In Android apps, strings are any text-based information stored in or used by the app (eg: Java strings, or strings.xml). Strings are often used to store and share text-based information such as usernames/passwords, authentication info, API keys, token, cookies, and more. Such data can be easily understood, and even extracted, from the application without using specialized tools.

Why Encrypt strings and resources in Android Apps ?

Encrypting strings in Android apps is an important measure to protect the data from being harvested for malicious purposes. This feature enhances the security of the app against malicious attempts to read the app’s contents or harvest valuable data about users and organizations.

Encrypting strings and resources on Android apps by Using Appdome

On Appdome, follow these 3 simple steps to create self-defending Android Apps that Encrypt strings and resources 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
  2. Build the Protection: Encrypt Strings.

    1. Building Encrypt Strings by using Appdome’s DEV-API:

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

        Figure 1: Fusion Set that will contain the Encrypt Strings 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 Encrypt Strings feature via Appdome Console, to add the Encrypt Strings 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 Encrypt Strings feature via Appdome Console

      To build the Encrypt Strings protection by using Appdome Console, follow the instructions below.

      1. Where: Inside the Appdome Console, go to Build > Security Tab > TOTALData™ Encryption section
      2. How: Toggle (turn ON) Encrypt Strings, as shown below. Encrypt Strings option

        Figure 3: Encrypt strings and resources option

      3. When you select the Encrypt Strings you'll notice that your Fusion Set you created in step 2.1.1 now bears the icon of the protection category that contains Encrypt Strings

        Fusion Set applied Encrypt Strings

        Figure 4: Fusion Set that displays the newly added Encrypt Strings protection

      4. Extra Configuration with Encrypt Strings:
        1. Encrypt Resources

          Encrypt all Android application assets.

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

    After building Encrypt Strings, Appdome generates a Certified Secure™ certificate to guarantee that the Encrypt Strings protection has been added and is protecting the app. To verify that the Encrypt Strings protection has been added to the mobile app, locate the protection in the Certified Secure™ certificate as shown below: Encrypt Strings 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 Encrypt Strings has been added to each Android app. Certified Secure provides instant and in-line DevSecOps compliance certification that Encrypt Strings and other mobile app security features are in each build of the mobile app

Prerequisites to Using Encrypt Strings:

To use Appdome’s mobile app security build system to Encrypt strings and resources , you’ll need:

Using Appdome, there are no development or coding prerequisites to build secured Apps by using Encrypt Strings. 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 Encrypt Strings

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:

All apps protected by Appdome are fully compatible with any public app store, including Apple App Store, Google Play, Huawei App Gallery and more.

Protections Similar to Encrypt Strings

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

Thank you!

Thanks for visiting Appdome! Our mission is to secure every app on the planet by making mobile app security easy. We hope we’re living up to the mission with your project.

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