MacBooks Get Hacked Within 60 Seconds
August 4, 2006 12:46 PM
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Security experts say poor driver design leaves doors wide open
Two security researchers from Black Hat this week revealed a method in which
a MacBook can be broken into and taken control of
. In fact, the intrusion method is at such a low level that even firewalls and anti-virus applications can't help. Based on flaws in wireless network driver design, Apple's line of MacBooks -- and MacBook Pros -- allows an attacker to remotely bypass the security of the laptop and the operating system.
Jon Ellch and David Maynor from Black Hat say that drivers for Apple's notebooks are developed not in house, but outside using contracted development companies. Ellch says that often times, these development people are under so much pressure from higher management to get working drivers so that companies can rush our products to market. Under circumstances like this, drivers for devices such as wireless network processors enter "the wild" in an untested state.
However, Mayner said that "we're not picking specifically on Macs here, but if you watch those 'Get a Mac' commercials enough, it eventually makes you want to stab one of those users in the eye with a lit cigarette or something." Mayner cites that many of Apple's commercials claim that Macs don't suffer from the same security vulnerabilities that PCs do but in fact, they do.
The team at Black Hat demonstrated that they could circumvent the Wi-Fi security and OS level security in a MacBook and within just 60 seconds, were able to take complete control of the machine. Black Hat demonstrated the technique through a pre-recorded video to prevent anyone from intercepting the wireless network traffic to deconstruct the attack and release it elsewhere. Black Hat said that it has been in contact with both Apple and Microsoft, because the vulnerability exists on both sides.
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RE: from the article...
8/4/2006 1:06:16 PM
"but it doesn't change the fact that it's noticeably Windows' fault"
It certainly is not. First, laying blame cannot be on an operating system, but on a firm. So, to correct your statement, you must mean it is Microsoft's fault. However, semantics aside, you cannot lay blame on an operating system for bad driver coding. Microsoft didn't write the drivers for the Mac's wireless device, the "contracted development companies" did, and then, because they weren't tested by Apple, the blame subsequently falls on those "development companies" and then Apple.
At the very least, you cannot blame Microsoft.
RE: from the article...
8/4/2006 1:08:39 PM
true, I agree with that. Thanks for the correction, you are correct, sir.
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