Access member only content, take part in discussions with comments on blogs, news and reviews and receive all the latest security industry news directly to your inbox. Join now for free.
Processing registration... Please wait.
This process can take up to a minute to complete.
A confirmation email has been sent to your email address - SUPPLIED EMAIL HERE. Please click on the link in the email to verify your email address. You need to verify your email before you can start posting.
If you do not receive your confirmation email within the next few minutes, it may be because the email has been captured by a junk mail filter. Please ensure you add the domain @scmagazine.com.au to your white-listed senders.
A malicious wireless tag has been created that can crack an Android phone in seconds.
The tag exploits a vulnerability in near field communication (NFC), a wireless technology popular on Android phones that establishes communication between devices through physical contact.
Well-known Apple hacker and Accuvant researcher Charlie Miller wowed the crowed at Black Hat Las Vegas through a demo that involved infiltrating an Android phone by simply grazing it with a tag embedded with an NFC chip.
Once the phone was tagged, the browser opened to a phony web page that gave Miller full access to the data on the device.
The exploited Android vulnerability was already patched by Google, but Miller also discovered a similar bug in Nokia N9 which runs on the MeeGo platform.
Miller told SC he decided to focus his latest research on the little researched NFC technology because exploiting it does not require user interaction.
"I'm always looking for something to pick on," he said.
Miller believes the lack of in the wild attacks against NFC may be because the technology still isn't prevalent.
"If you imagine a time when you're always paying with your phone, these [attacks] would be everywhere," he said. "Replacing NFC tags with malicious ones are totally realistic. It's the equivalent of ATM skimming."
There is a way to make the technology more secure, such as prompting a user to opt in to each exchange they make, but the solution would affect the convenience of NFC, Miller said.
"You would have to give up some of that convenience to make it more secure," he said.
This article originally appeared at scmagazineus.com
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below or register an account if you don't yet have one. Please read our guidelines on commenting. Offending posts will be removed and your access may be suspended. Abusive or obscene language will not be tolerated. The comments below do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of SC Magazine, Haymarket Media or its employees.