New airborne security virus is likely to infect billions of devices without owners knowledge

New airborne security virus is likely to infect billions of devices without owners knowledge

By Lauren Forbes

Internet security analysts are warning the potential of a new airborne computer virus, dubbed as ‘BlueBorne Vulnerability,’ having the capability to infect billions of phones and other devices.

The attack vector has the ability of infecting a person’s device without their knowledge and can spread without the devices owner even clicking on a link or downloading a malicious file.

Any device can be simply accessed by the airborne virus via Bluetooth.

If Bluetooth is on, a hacker can subsequently take control and spread malware without actually pairing to it, surpassing the capabilities of most attacks as it is completely invisible.

BlueBorne has effected 5.3 billion devices across Android, Windows, Linux and IOS and is estimated to rise to 8 billion around the world.

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With Apple iPhones immune to the attack and Microsoft dispatching a fix, Google has deployed an additional fix to device manufactures after being titled as the most vulnerable to the virus.

Ty Miller, managing director of international cyber security firm Threat Intelligence said

 “A virus using airborne can cause spread exponentially as people pass each other in the street.”

The fear of the virus further spreading is apparent with Mr Miller believing the finding of BlueBorne may only just be “the tip of the iceberg” and their could be more potential airborne security threats.

The IoT security and consultancy company, Armis Labs that discovered BlueBorne believes the airborne virus’ aim is to access corporate data and networks while spreading malware to other surrounding devices.

Armis Labs have released a demonstration of the attack on an untreated Pixel, exercising the airborne attack.

The vector has several stages of attack. First, the attacker finds an active Bluetooth device and subsequently obtains the devices unique MAC address. The attacker then can probe the device by determining which operating system the victim is using. Access is then gained after vulnerability in the implementation of Bluetooth protocol is made.

The easiest way to avoid infection of this vector on your device is to leave Bluetooth off and to always keep security software updated.

Despite security researchers having detected BlueBorne before hackers had the chance to exploit it, Armis labs still believe the virus is a threat due to careless device users.

Armis have released an Android app to check for the virus via BlueBorne Vulnerability Scanner on Google Play.

 

 

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earche04
earche04 26 posts

Erin joined the NRN team straight after graduating from a Bachelor of Communications (Journalism) at Charles Sturt University in 2016.

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