Can’t Pair Some Bluetooth Devices Anymore On Windows 8 Or 10? That’s Intentional!
On June 11, 2019, Microsoft issued security updates for all fortified versions of the Windows Operating System (OS). Some of the relinquished updates patch a Bluetooth security susceptibility by “intentionally obviating connections between Windows, and Bluetooth devices that are not secure, and use well-kenned keys to encrypt connections, including security fobs”.
In other words: after the recent security update is installed, Windows avoids the pairing of certain Bluetooth appliances with Windows systems.
Microsoft Pronounces As:
You may experience issues pairing, connecting or using certain Bluetooth devices after installing security updates released June 11, 2019. These security updates address a security vulnerability by intentionally preventing connections from Windows to insecure Bluetooth devices.
A Support Page on the Microsoft Support website highlights the affected versions, and updates:
- Windows 10: all versions.
- Windows 8.1
- Window Server 2019
- Windows Server 2016
- Windows Server 2012 R2
- Windows Server 2012
- Windows Embedded 8 Standard
The CVE reveals that the issue affects Android devices only. It lists Android version 7.0 to Android 9 as potentially affected. Whether a device is affected depends on the manufacturer. If the manufacturer used a proved example Long Term Key, it is affected by the issue.
In the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) specification, there is a provided example Long Term Key (LTK). If a BLE device were to use this as a hardcoded LTK, it is theoretically possible for a proximate attacker to remotely inject keystrokes on a paired Android host due to improperly used crypto. User interaction is not needed for exploitation. Product: Android. Versions: Android-7.0 Android-7.1.1 Android-7.1.2 Android-8.0 Android-8.1 Android-9. Android ID: A-128843052.
Administrators May Check The Event Log To Find Out If A Bluetooth Device Is Affected By The Intentional Change:
- Load the Event Viewer from the Start Menu.
- Switch to Windows Logs > System.
- Locate the following events:
- Event Log: System
- Event Source: BTHUSB or BTHMINI
- Event ID: 22
- Name: BTHPORT_DEBUG_LINK_KEY_NOT_ALLOWED
- Level: Error
- Event Message Text: Your Bluetooth device attempted to establish a debug connection. The Windows Bluetooth stack does not allow debug connection while it is not in the debug mode.
- If you see the event listed you know that the Bluetooth device is affected by the change.
Microsoft advises to contact the manufacturer of the Bluetooth device to determine whether device updates are available. These need to update the connection options of the Bluetooth device to address the security issue for the device.
Options to connect affected Bluetooth devices, e.g. by overriding the intentional change, have not been revealed by Microsoft. The only option to restore pairing functionality for affected devices for which updates are not available is to restore an earlier version of the Windows OS. Doing so would open the system up for attacks targeting that vulnerability, however. (Via Deskmodder, Windows Latest)
New ‘ RCS Standard ‘ SMS Alternative Exposes Users to Security Threats!
This Article Covers New ‘ RCS Standard ‘ SMS Alternative Exposes Users to Security Threats!
Replacement of the regular SMS by the RCS or Rich Communication Services makes users vulnerable to text-based attacks, location tracking, call interception, and more according to new research. RCS standard (Rich Communication Services) is a replacement for SMS with functions such as read confirmations, the ability to send media, etc.
Although the new SMS standard is not inherently flawed, researchers at SLabs state that carrier networks expose users to several security threats because they are implementing RCS on a large scale. Because there is no uniform standard, large telecom companies can use it differently and make mistakes.
What Is RCS?
RCS is a protocol that will soon replace the standard SMS. Although it originated in 2007, we barely recognized it until 2018 when Google announced that it is working with major providers to bring the RCS protocol to Android devices. With the new standard, users can start a group chat, send high-resolution images, audio – mainly all the functions of popular chat services such as iMessage and WhatsApp.
What’S The Problem?
For the research, the SLabs team took sample SIM cards from different providers and searched for RCS-related domains. The o find every vulnerability.
The researchers discovered problems in how telecom sends the RCS configuration files to devices. For example, a server provides the exact configuration file by identifying the IP addresses.
Karsten Nohl of SLabs said that any app could request the file, with or without permissions, because they also use the IP address. “So now every app can get your username and password for all your text messages and all your voice calls.”
The researchers also found security breaches in the authentication process. For example, a telecom sends a unique authentication code to verify the identification of the RCS user. Because the carrier gives an ‘unlimited number of attempts’, bad actors can bypass authentication with unlimited attempts.
Response From Network Providers
When asked to comment, Vodafone assured users that it would take security measures to protect the RCS services. In the meantime, AT&T and Sprint focused their concerns on the GSM Association (a trade organization for telecommunications)
GSM told Vice that although they appreciate the efforts of SLabs to the public, the security issues; however, the study includes “no new vulnerabilities” that the body was unaware of.
The SLabs researchers will report their findings at the Black Hat December conference in Europe.
Users Are Still Not In A Hurry To Install New Releases Of Windows 10
Users Are Still Not In A Hurry To Install New Releases Of Windows 10
Here Is The Details:
AdDuplex tracks the delivery status of the different variants of Windows 10. The statistics for June revealed that the October 2018 Update (1809) was only on 30 percent of systems (down from 31.3 percent in May), while the May 2019 Update (1903) was discovered on 6.3 percent of computers in the same time span.
The surveillance company has just published its stats for July ( i.e AdDuplex Report For July 2019), showing that the May 2019 Update has found its way to more devices, but at a very cautious rate.
The revision has gained just 5 % share in the previous month, and is now on 11.4 % of Windows 10 installs.
The April 2018 Update remains comfortably the most popular flavor of Windows 10, with 53.7 % share, although it’s down from the 58 % it held last month.
LinkedIn Is Full Of Spies, Is This True?
LinkedIn Is Full Of Spies, Is This Is True?
What types of user are you of LinkedIn? The type that accepts requests from individuals you know only “connects?” Or is there a blanket accepter connecting to all who ask?
Fortunately, many U.S. government officials and political intelligentsia are falling into the latter camp for the American public! Which makes LinkedIn a prime hunting ground for… foreign spies?!
According to a new report from the Associated Press, foreign intelligence operations routinely use LinkedIn to target, connect with, and eventually gain knowledge about and influence over American political affairs.
These operations create fake LinkedIn profiles, boasting impressive (imaginary) credentials alongside computer-generated photos, which send connection requests to politicians, lobbyists, academics, or think tank employees. Once one person accepts, that bolsters the fake account’s credibility, so other high-profile LinkedIn users accept, too, and so it goes.
These profiles send out tens of thousands of connection requests at a time. And, apparently, there have been multiple independent cases of American figures being targeted by Russian or Chinese spy operations via connections they unwittingly accepted on LinkedIn.
The AP spoke with multiple D.C. figures, including a former Trump administration official, who had accepted a connection request from political expert “Katie Jones.” None of Jones’ credentials checked out, and experts determined that her photo was generated by A.I., so Jones, by all accounts, does not exist. But the person running the account still had the ability to direct message with political influencers, posing as a colleague.
LinkedIn told the AP that it removes fake accounts; indeed, it removed Jones’ account shortly after the AP inquired about Katie Jones. But as multiple other social networks have demonstrated, a reactionary stance in the fight against fake activity online is an insufficient one.
AND IN THE CASE OF LINKEDIN AS A BREEDING GROUND FOR ESPIONAGE, THAT’S NOT ENOUGH.