When purchasing your next car, you face many options. You want a good price, but also good gas mileage and perhaps an entertainment system for the kids in back. But for Dr. Charlie Miller, Twitter, and Chris Valasek, director of vehicle security research at I/OActive, the main criteria is whether or not the car is a likely candidate to be hacked. In particular they said they were interested in cars that would be more susceptible to remote hacking. Work done previously by Professor Stefan Savage along with graduate students from the University of Santa Barbara and the University of Washington used the Onboard Diagnostic port to control a car. Last year Miller and Valasek used internal wiring to gain control of their test cars. This year the pair said they wanted to take a step back and look at how cars in general communicate internally as a predictor of hacking […]
A four year-old vulnerability in an open source component that is a critical part of Google’s Android mobile operating system could leave mobile devices that use it susceptible to attack, according to researchers at the firm Bluebox Security. The vulnerability was disclosed on Tuesday. It affects devices running Android versions 2.1 to 4.4 (“KitKat”), according to a statement released by Bluebox. According to Bluebox, the vulnerability was introduced to Android by way of the open source Apache Harmony module. It affects Android’s verification of digital signatures that are used to vouch for the identity of mobile applications, according to Jeff Forristal, Bluebox’s CTO. He will be presenting details about the FakeID vulnerability at the Black Hat Briefings security conference in Las Vegas next week.
Google has unveiled an all-star team of hackers and security researchers it is calling “Project Zero.” According to a post on Google’s security blog, the company is hoping to use its security research muscle to investigate the security of “any software depended upon by large numbers of people, paying careful attention to the techniques, targets and motivations of attackers.” Research like Google employee Neel Mehta’s, which helped expose the “Heartbleed” vulnerability in OpenSSL is a good example of the kinds of stuff Project Zero will do. Researchers will devote their time to finding and reporting software vulnerabilities and researching new exploits, mitigations and “program analysis.” The company said it plans to disclose any vulnerabilities it finds to the vendor first, then to the public in an external database. The public can monitor “time to patch” (given that the vulnerability is disclosed ahead of a patch). Project Zero brings Google’s elite hackers under […]
Researchers from the University of California, Berkeley have published a paper describing security holes in five, web-based password managers including LastPass, My1login and Roboform. According to the paper (PDF), four out of the five password managers inadvertently leaked a user’s credentials for stored web sites due to all-too-common web based security flaws like Cross Site Request Forgery (CSRF) and Cross Site Scripting (XSS). The researchers, Zhiwei Li, Warren He, Devdatta Akwawe and Dawn Song, all of the University of California Berkeley, said that they disclosed the holes in August of last year and that all of the affected firms and that all but one – NeedMyPassword – have since patched the vulnerabilities. All the password managers tested were found to contain one of a short list of security problems. Either they were vulnerable to classic web-based holes (like XSS), or they were found to be susceptible to user interface-focused attacks, like […]
Thomas Brewster over at Forbes has an interesting story this week on a $10,000 bounty that’s being offered for anyone who can hack Tesla’s Model S sedan. The contest is open to all registered attendees of SyScan Conference in Beijing, which takes place later in July. (Conference web site is here.) According to Brewster, the contest is not endorsed by Tesla, nor is the company cooperating in any way. The conference features a number of hacking demonstrations, including at least one on hacking cars: this presentation on strategies for securing Controller Area Network (CAN) based systems – CAN is the most commonly used networking protocol in automobiles. Tesla – which makes the most wired cars on the road – have flirted with both hackers and mod-ers in the past. Notably: this article mentions one car owner’s hack of Tesla’s (really nice) on board touch screen interface. That prompted a warning from […]