Feeds

Aha, I see you switched on your mobile Wi-Fi. YOU FOOL!

PNL bug still leaving door open to hackers - security bod

High performance access to file storage

Security expert Raul Siles has warned that years after it was first identified, the Preferred Networks List (PNL) Wi-Fi bug remains unaddressed on many an iPhone, Android phone, and Windows or BlackBerry handset.

The problem itself is simple enough, reports HelpNet Security. When searching for networks, a poor Wi-Fi implementation can result in a device exposing its PNL list to eavesdroppers. This could allow an attacker to spoof one of the network that appears on the user's list, becoming the vector for a man-in-the-middle attack.

PNL disclosure remains a problem in Android 2, 3 and 4, may occur when users add networks manually in iOS 1-6, and in BlackBerry 7, according to Siles. It has also been fixed in some versions of Windows Mobile.

Some mobile operating systems (BlackBerry, for example) give users enough control that the problem can be fixed manually – but only, Siles said, if the user knows there's a problem and knows how to fix it.

Given the growing popularity of BYOD in the business environment, there's the added danger of a fake preferred network being used to capture corporate logins. System administrators need to ensure that devices hide Wi-Fi network data (where this is possible), and Siles called for Android to be upgraded to allow users to hide new networks.

Siles adds:

I need to stress that these types of client attacks are commonly left unchecked and without consideration, the modern smartphone could become the ultimate digital "Trojan Horse", allowing attacks to breach ultra-secure locations.

®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
German space centre endures cyber attack
Chinese code retrieved but NSA hack not ruled out
prev story

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.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.