It’s possible for Android apps to read the contents of your phone’s clipboard even when they’re running in the background. There are third-party ROMs that block this access but Android in its default state currently does not. However, this could change with Android Q, the next major iteration of Google’s mobile operating system.
The folks at XDA developers have discovered a new permission in a leaked Android Q build titled “android.permission.READ_CLIPBOARD_IN_BACKGROUND.” The suggests that only applications that have been explicitly given this permission will be able to read clipboard data when they’re running in the background, not all apps.
This permission’s protection level is “signature,” which means that only system apps will be able to take advantage of this permission. It will be good if Android Q does add this layer of security. Android currently lets all apps read the clipboard even when they’re in the background. Since many users copy sensitive information like passwords, emails, bank details, etc, this sensitive information can thus be at risk of being scraped by a malicious app.
This has obviously not been confirmed officially by Google. The company has yet to announce Android Q and that won’t happen until May. Google I/O 2019 takes place on May 7th and that’s where Google will unveil Android Q.