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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: Amen
By ksherman on 8/4/2006 9:59:10 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
sherman, you're getting in the same old trap again and again - you compare modern desktop Wintels with ancient PowerPC Macs. When are you going to stop falling in the same manhole? Can't you see current Intel iMacs are VERY different both price-wise and feature-wise from old museum PPC PowerMacs? I don't even understand why you bother posting here comparing some museum Apple computers with modern Intel PCs - yeah, I CAN TOO compare Win 3.1 with Mac OS X 10.4.7 and you know what? Win 3.1 SUCKS! You don't buy my argument of comparing old technology to new one? THEN PLEASE DON'T USE SAME ARGUMENT YOURSELF, would you pleeaase??!


Those specs were still for shit when the Quad was released. Not enough hardware for the price, thats all im saying. You spend that much on a dell/alienware, you get a MUCH better Video Card/HD/Base RAM, even then (which was only about a year ago remember)


RE: Amen
By Pirks on 8/5/2006 1:30:22 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Those specs were still for shit when the Quad was released. Not enough hardware for the price, thats all im saying.
Not enough hardware for PowerPC Quad? Excuse me? COULD YOU BUY PowerPC quad-core computer ANYWHERE ELSE BACK THEN? NO? Then put your sticker back and don't take it off until you understand this: "one can not compare apples and oranges, especially when there is one unique special apple (PPC Quad monster) and an ocean of similar looking oranges (your cheap beige Wintel PCs)"

Do you understand, sherman? You _can't_ compare them - they are WAY TOO DIFFERENT to be compared. Agreed?

If not - tell me why quad-core PPC computer is exactly the same as your standard issue Intel P4 Dell PC, gimme some solid technical arguments please. Thanks.


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