Did you know that any Android app can read the contents of your clipboard, even when running in the background? Windows Phone (RIP) didn’t give clipboard access to background apps, and some Android ROMs like Copperhead OS block access, but the behavior is still allowed on regular Android. That might finally change, according to a permission change discovered by XDA Developers.
XDA found a new permission in a leaked build of Android Q, named “android.permission.READ_CLIPBOARD_IN_BACKGROUND.” The name implies that only applications given this permission — not all apps — can read clipboard data while running in the background. The protection level is “signature,” meaning only system-level apps can use it.
This likely means that third-party Android apps will no longer be able to read clipboard data while inactive, at least on Android Q and higher. While this might end up breaking a few apps, it seems like an overall win for user security and privacy.