Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Attacks/Breaches

8/18/2006
09:15 AM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Apple's Core Is Secure

Researchers now say they used a third-party drive to facilitate infamous MacBook hack at Black Hat

After all the kerfuffle over Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL)'s device driver security, precipitated by a demo of a MacBook hack at the recent Black Hat Inc. security conference, it turns out that the researchers weren't using Apple software but exploiting a weakness in a third-party driver.

At the show, SecureWorks Inc. researchers Jon Ellch and David Maynor showed a video demo of a hack using wireless drivers to quickly access a MacBook computer. The two researchers demonstrated how the drivers could be used to establish a connection and seize control of a laptop, even if the laptop was not associated with any WiFi access point. (See Users Eye New 802.11 Security Issues .)

When the hack was unveiled, Maynor told The Washington Post that they showed it on an Apple because of the "Mac user base aura of smugness on security." The researchers, however, have now put a notice on their Website to clarify that the hack used a third-party USB driver, which they are not naming until a patch is available.

"The video presentation at Black Hat demonstrates vulnerabilities found in wireless device drivers. Although an Apple MacBook was used as the demo platform, it was exploited through a third-party wireless device driver -- not the original wireless device driver that ships with the MacBook."

The researcher's admission, however, is unlikely to calm the frazzled nerves of enterprise users fretting about 802.11 security. Some higher-ups have already said that they will advise users to ensure that, until fixes are found, their WiFi radios are switched off when not in use. The hack also works against Windows machines. Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) has issued some patches but said that users should contact their laptop manufacturers for brand-specific updates. (See Intel's Centrino Vulnerability.)

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

Dan is to hats what Will.I.Am is to ridiculous eyewear. Fedora, trilby, tam-o-shanter -- all have graced the Jones pate during his career as the go-to purveyor of mobile essentials. But hey, Dan is so much more than 4G maps and state-of-the-art headgear. Before joining the ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 11/19/2020
New Proposed DNS Security Features Released
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  11/19/2020
The Yellow Brick Road to Risk Management
Andrew Lowe, Senior Information Security Consultant, TalaTek,  11/19/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: He hits the gong anytime he sees someone click on an email link.
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-29128
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-26
petl before 1.68, in some configurations, allows resolution of entities in an XML document.
CVE-2020-27251
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-26
A heap overflow vulnerability exists within FactoryTalk Linx Version 6.11 and prior. This vulnerability could allow a remote, unauthenticated attacker to send malicious port ranges, which could result in remote code execution.
CVE-2020-27253
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-26
A flaw exists in the Ingress/Egress checks routine of FactoryTalk Linx Version 6.11 and prior. This vulnerability could allow a remote, unauthenticated attacker to specifically craft a malicious packet resulting in a denial-of-service condition on the device.
CVE-2020-27255
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-26
A heap overflow vulnerability exists within FactoryTalk Linx Version 6.11 and prior. This vulnerability could allow a remote, unauthenticated attacker to send malicious set attribute requests, which could result in the leaking of sensitive information. This information disclosure could lead to the b...
CVE-2020-25651
PUBLISHED: 2020-11-26
A flaw was found in the SPICE file transfer protocol. File data from the host system can end up in full or in parts in the client connection of an illegitimate local user in the VM system. Active file transfers from other users could also be interrupted, resulting in a denial of service. The highest...