In-brief: In an essay for O’Reilly Radar, Cory Doctorow argues that remote management features that allow carriers to disable mobile phones are a mistake – taking technology owners’ autonomy and control over their data away in the name of preventing muggings and other crimes.
Search Results for "over-the-air"
Last week, home broadband router maker ASUS was the latest vendor to issue an emergency patch for a critical vulnerability in its products. This, after proof-of-concept exploit code was released for the so-called “Inforsvr” vulnerability that affects several ASUS home routers. That vulnerability -if left unpatched – would allow anyone with access to a home- or small business network that used an ASUS broadband router to, essentially, commandeer the device. The “infosvr” feature is typically used for device discovery by the ASUS Wireless Router Device Discovery Utility, but the service also allowed unauthenticated users to execute commands through it using the “root” permissions, according to researcher Friedrich Postelstorfer, who created a proof of concept exploit for the security hole and released it on January 4. The exploit code finally prompted a patch from ASUS on January 13. The company had spent months analyzing the issue and working on a fix. Patch aside, it has been a worrying month for the […]
CoolPad, an up-and-coming Chinese mobile phone maker, is shipping high-end, Android smart phones with so-called “back door” access built into the phone’s software. That, according to research by the firm Palo Alto Networks. Palo Alto researchers Claud Xiao and Ryan Olson released a report identifying the suspicious remote access software, which they dubbed “CoolReaper” on Wednesday. According to the report, the so-called “backdoor” program was shipped with stock operating systems (or ROMs) used by Coolpad’s “high end” phones in China and Taiwan. The software, which appears to have been created and managed by Coolpad, runs on top of the Android operating system and allows the company to remotely manage the phone independent of the wishes of its owner: pushing applications to the device without the user’s consent or notification, wiping data and applications, sending over-the-air (or OTA) updates to the phone, transmitting device data and sending arbitrary phone calls and SMS […]
Car and Driver has an interesting news item today on Tesla’s continuing efforts to build an internal team of software hackers to shore up the security of its connected cars. C&D reports that Tesla is looking to hire up to 30 full-time employees from the hacking community, and used the recent DEFCON hacking conference in Las Vegas to recruit talented software hackers, reverse engineers and the assorted polymaths who attend. Tesla gave out tokens that could be exchanged for a tour of the Tesla factory at the show. “Our security team is focused on advancing technology to secure connected cars, setting new standards for security, and creating new capabilities for connected cars that don’t currently exist in the automotive industry,” Tesla spokeswoman Liz Jarvis-Shean told C&D. California-based Tesla has already been making the rounds of security conferences. It also made headlines for hiring Kristin Paget, a well-respected hardware hacker […]
You could be forgiven for never having heard of Red Bend Software. The company is small – just 250 employees- and privately held. Red Bend’s headquarters is a suite of offices in a nondescript office park in Waltham, Massachusetts, just off Route 128 – America’s “Silicon Highway.” But the company’s small profile belies a big footprint in the world of mobile devices. Since 2005, more than 2 billion devices running the company’s mobile management software have been sold worldwide. Today, the Red Bend is believed to control between 70 and 90 percent of the market for mobile software management (MSM) technology, which carriers use to service mobile devices. The software enables mobile carriers to do critical tasks, including firmware-over-the-air (FOTA) software updates, mobile device configuration and other on-device changes. Red Bend counts many of the world’s leading companies in the mobile, enterprise and manufacturing sectors as clients, including Intel, Qualcomm, Samsung, Sharp, LG, Sony, Huawei, China Mobile and Lenovo. For the most part, Red […]