Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Network Security

11/5/2018
09:35 AM
Larry Loeb
Larry Loeb
Larry Loeb
50%
50%

'BLEEDINGBIT' Bluetooth Vulnerability Leaves Enterprises Exposed to Attacks

Security firm Armis has found two, zero-day vulnerabilities in the BLE protocol of Texas Instrument chips that researchers call 'BLEEDINGBIT.'

Armis, a security firm which has already found vulnerabilities with Bluetooth, has found two additional zero-day vulnerabilities that can affect 70% to 80% of businesses through Cisco, Meraki and Aruba wireless access points (APs), which are widely used by enterprises.

The BLE protocol -- also known as Bluetooth Smart -- is based on the standard Bluetooth communications protocol but has been modified for Internet of Things (IoT) devices. It is used for access point networking, smart home locks, phone as-a-key connected systems, tracking systems as well as medical devices.

Armis detailed these two vulnerabilities, which the firm calls "BLEEDINGBIT," in a a blog post.

(Source: iStock)
(Source: iStock)

One problem (CVE-2018-16986) affects Cisco and Meraki APs that make use of Texas Instruments BLE chips. The Specific chips that are vulnerable include the CC2640 (non-R2) with BLE-STACK version 2.2.1 or earlier, CC2650 with BLE-STACK version 2.2.1 or earlier and CC2640R2 with BLE-STACK version 1.0 or earlier.

TI chips that are not affected include Automotive Qualified CC2640R2F-Q1, CC2540/CC2541 devices on any BLE-STACK version, CC2640R2 SDK version 1.30.00.25 or greater, CC1352/CC26x2 on any supported SDK version and CC2640 or CC2650 on any supported BLE-STACK SDK version 2.2.2. In general, any device configuration that doesn't perform BLE scanning -- that is, a peripheral role or advertiser role -- will not be affected.

However, if there is the vulnerability, the potential attacker can send out multiple benign BLE broadcast messages that are stored on the memory of the chip. If the chip remains powered up, the data remains. It can be later used with an overflow packet to trigger a memory overflow.

The overflow then can be used to remotely execute malicious code.

The APs are that are affected include Cisco's 1542 AP, 1815 AP, 4800 AP, as well as Meraki's MR33, MR30H, MR74 and MR53E, according to Armis.

The second problem (CVE-2018-7080) is a backdoor used by developers to push over-the-air downloads (OAD) of the chip's firmware that has snuck into production devices. It is enabled by a preset password.

Attackers could modify firmware through this, allowing for remote code execution (RCE) and other security problems.

Armis found the backdoor present in Aruba WiFi access point Series 300 systems.

In addition, Armis researchers found that the attacks utilizing Bleedingbit cannot be detected by traditional antivirus tools. However, there are updates to follow:

  • For CVE-2018-16986 mitigation, the TI BLE-STACK update has been released
  • Customers using CC2640 (non-R2) and CC2650 with BLE-STACK version 2.2.1 or earlier should update to version 2.2.2
  • Customers using CC2640R2F, with SimpleLink CC2640R2 SDK version 1.00.00.22 (BLE-STACK 3.0.0) need to update to SimpleLink CC2640R2F SDK version 1.30.00.25 (BLE-STACK 3.0.1) or later
  • Customers using CC1350, with SimpleLink CC13x0 SDK version 2.20.00.38 (BLE-STACK 2.3.3) or earlier will need to update to SimpleLink CC13x0 SDK version 2.30.00.20 (BLE-STACK 2.3.4) or later

However, for the OAD problem, it will depend on manufacturers that have included OAD functionality in their products to rectify it.

This is a chip-level supply chain attack at its root. The chips used in the product have the vulnerability, and the chip is where mitigation efforts must be addressed.

Related posts:

— Larry Loeb has written for many of the last century's major "dead tree" computer magazines, having been, among other things, a consulting editor for BYTE magazine and senior editor for the launch of WebWeek.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Commentary
How SolarWinds Busted Up Our Assumptions About Code Signing
Dr. Jethro Beekman, Technical Director,  3/3/2021
News
'ObliqueRAT' Now Hides Behind Images on Compromised Websites
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  3/2/2021
News
Attackers Turn Struggling Software Projects Into Trojan Horses
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  2/26/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2021-21510
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
Dell iDRAC8 versions prior to 2.75.100.75 contain a host header injection vulnerability. A remote unauthenticated attacker may potentially exploit this vulnerability by injecting arbitrary ‘Host’ header values to poison a web-cache or trigger redirections.
CVE-2020-27575
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
Maxum Rumpus 8.2.13 and 8.2.14 is affected by a command injection vulnerability. The web administration contains functionality in which administrators are able to manage users. The edit users form contains a parameter vulnerable to command injection due to insufficient validation.
CVE-2020-27576
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
Maxum Rumpus 8.2.13 and 8.2.14 is affected by cross-site scripting (XSS). Users are able to create folders in the web application. The folder name is insufficiently validated resulting in a stored cross-site scripting vulnerability.
CVE-2020-27838
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
A flaw was found in keycloak in versions prior to 13.0.0. The client registration endpoint allows fetching information about PUBLIC clients (like client secret) without authentication which could be an issue if the same PUBLIC client changed to CONFIDENTIAL later. The highest threat from this vulner...
CVE-2021-21503
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-08
PowerScale OneFS 8.1.2,8.2.2 and 9.1.0 contains an improper input sanitization issue in a command. The Compadmin user could potentially exploit this vulnerability, leading to potential privileges escalation.