Thursday, August 07, 2008

Black Hat: 'Windows Jingle Attack' Exposed

Thomas Claburn writes on InformationWeek:

At the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas on Thursday, Eric Filiol, the head scientist at the French Signals Academy's Virology and Cryptology Lab, explained how to steal data from a computer without a network connection.

Filiol demonstrated what he called the Windows Jingle Attack, a method for encoding a user's password into audio data and concealing that data into the Windows start-up tone, a publicly audible sound that can be read from afar with a local or remote microphone and then decoded.

The Windows Jingle Attack requires a malware on the target machine, so that in that respect it's not as easy to execute as other attacks that allow remote code execution. Nonetheless, there are certain scenarios when being able to obtain data from a computer without a network connection would be valuable.

There's precedent for related attacks in the intelligence community. In 1987, the NSA found that the KGB had replaced the circuit boards and power cords in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow in order to covertly siphon message data.

More here.


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