Security Corner

Jul 24 2010   12:49AM GMT

The Router Attack is Back in the News – Ho-Hum



Posted by: Ken Harthun
Tags:
Black Hat conference
Hacking
Routers
Vulnerabilities

Subtitle: “How to Hack Millions of Routers”

This really isn’t anything new, it’s just back in the news again. According to this article on Forbes.com:

Craig Heffner, a researcher with Maryland-based security consultancy Seismic, plans to release a software tool at the conference later this month that he says could be used on about half the existing models of home routers, including most Linksys, Dell, and Verizon Fios or DSL versions. Users who connect to the Internet through those devices and are tricked into visiting a page that an attacker has set up with Heffner’s exploit could have their router hijacked and used to steal information or redirect the user’s browsing.

It’s the old DNS Rebinding Attack I wrote about two years ago:

DNS rebinding attacks, also known as anti-DNS pinning attacks, have been around for at least a decade, but they were virtually forgotten until recently. The attacks are an exploit in which a hacker uses JavaScript on a malicious Web page to gain control of the victim’s router.

A user, for example, could be tricked into visiting an attacker’s website. If a default router password is detected, the hacker’s JavaScript code could cause the user’s browser to change details on the router administration page. Those alterations then might allow the attacker to control the device remotely, and as a result, control the owner’s Internet communications.

So, what’s new about this? Is this some sort of new approach to vulnerability? Must have been a slow security news week. Not this week, however. A newly-discovered 0-day vulnerability in Windows is the top of the news right now. My take on that one tomorrow.

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