Feeds

Hack exposes AACS 'hole'

Keys handed over without authentication

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Hackers appear to have figured out how to access one of the crucial HD DVD encryption keys without having to authorise the data - potentially rendering the latest attempt to block such activity useless.

The crack, posted on the Xboxhacker website, uses a standard, unmodified Microsoft's Xbox 360 HD DVD drive to hand over a disc's Volume ID without ensuring AACS has authenticated it first. Since no authentication is performed, even if the Volume ID has been rejected by the AACS Licensing Authority - the organisation that maintains the copy-protection system - it can still be used.

The Volume ID is just one of a number of keys used by AACS to encrypt a disc's content. It's used with the Processing Key held by the playback software to create the Volume Unique Key (VUK) used to decrypt the content.

The crack doesn't facilitate copying per se, but it does appear to make it possible to play back copies as if they were the real thing. Until now, this has required the drive's firmware to be patched.

Decrypting a disc to access the content - say, to burn a AACS-free copy, or to transcode the content into another format - remains difficult, not least because the Processing Key can be controlled by the AACS LA by demanding it be changed, typically by releasing a new version of the playback app.

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
'Kim Kardashian snaps naked selfies with a BLACKBERRY'. *Twitterati gasps*
More alleged private, nude celeb pics appear online
Home Depot ignored staff warnings of security fail laundry list
'Just use cash', former security staffer warns friends
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign
Claim of tapped undersea cable refuted by Kiwi PM as Kim claims extradition plot
Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach
Miscreants probably got in, you guys know the drill by now
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
BitTorrent's peer-to-peer chat app Bleep goes live as public alpha
A good day for privacy as invisble.im also reveals its approach to untraceable chats
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.