Feeds

Apple's FaceTime for Mac debuts with security holes

Beta puts iTunes accounts at risk

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

This article is being updated to note that, according to Apple Insider, this bug is no longer reproducible. Apple has provided no comment, and no update for the beta was released to effect the change.

Apple's recently released FaceTime for Mac beta allows users to make important iTunes account changes without first entering their password, a shortcoming that could create serious security issues.

The shortcoming came to light in a Macworld Germany post that found that once the beta was installed, the associated iTunes password could be changed without first reentering the old password. Other important settings, including the account's security question, could similarly be modified.

That means anyone with physical access to a Mac with the beta installed can take control of the user's iTunes account. Most programs — Apple's iTunes included — require users to reenter their password to prevent such tampering.

A separate report from Macnn.com said that if a computer is already logged into FaceTime, account settings will display all of a user's associated data, including birth date, security question, and matching answer. “This makes it trivial to hijack an account if an attacker already has access to a person's Mac,” the report stated.

The threats exist even when users click the “sign out” button that logs them out of iTunes. That's because the old password is cached, making it easy for an attacker to log back in using the “Sign in” button.

FaceTime has been available for users of the iPhone 4 and fourth generation iPod touch, but only made its debut on the Mac on Wednesday, with a beta that was released as part of Apple's Back to the Mac software refresh. It allows users to chat by video with others who have the software installed. ®

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.