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.

Vulnerabilities / Threats

4/13/2018
04:14 PM
50%
50%

Power Line Vulnerability Closes Air Gap

A new demonstration of malware shows that air-gapped computers may still be at risk.

Security professionals love to talk about the "air gap" as the ultimate in safety for a computer: When it's not attached to network cables or a wireless network, it's presumed to be safe. Presumed, that is, until now. This week, researchers from the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev announced that they have come up with a way to exfiltrate data from air-gapped computers via malware that can control the computer's power consumption.

By adding workload to CPU cores that aren't doing anything else, the malware will change how much power (how many watts) the computer is using. Done carefully, the result is, essentially, an FM transmission over the power line. When a probe is placed near the power cable, the modulation can be detected and decoded — and information will have left the system.

The researchers call the malware that controls the power consumption PowerHammer; so far, it's a research proof-of-concept that hasn't been seen in the wild. That's good, because while ways to thwart a PowerHammer-like attack exist, none are perfect.

PowerHammer isn't the first time control or information signals have been sent over power lines. Electric motors are frequently controlled via pulse-width modulation (PWM) sent over the power lines, building control systems have used power-line carriers, and some electrical utilities have experimented with broadband internet access over power lines. This is, however, a reminder that capabilities can be used by individuals and groups with many different agendas.

For more, read here.

Interop ITX 2018

Join Dark Reading LIVE for a two-day Cybersecurity Crash Course at Interop ITX. Learn from the industry’s most knowledgeable IT security experts. Check out the agenda here. Register with Promo Code DR200 and save $200.

Dark Reading's Quick Hits delivers a brief synopsis and summary of the significance of breaking news events. For more information from the original source of the news item, please follow the link provided in this article. View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
7 Truths About BEC Scams
Ericka Chickowski, Contributing Writer,  6/13/2019
DNS Firewalls Could Prevent Billions in Losses to Cybercrime
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  6/13/2019
Cognitive Bias Can Hamper Security Decisions
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  6/10/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
Building and Managing an IT Security Operations Program
As cyber threats grow, many organizations are building security operations centers (SOCs) to improve their defenses. In this Tech Digest you will learn tips on how to get the most out of a SOC in your organization - and what to do if you can't afford to build one.
Flash Poll
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
Your enterprise's cyber risk may depend upon the relationship between the IT team and the security team. Heres some insight on what's working and what isn't in the data center.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-12855
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-16
In words.protocols.jabber.xmlstream in Twisted through 19.2.1, XMPP support did not verify certificates when used with TLS, allowing an attacker to MITM connections.
CVE-2013-7472
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
The "Count per Day" plugin before 3.2.6 for WordPress allows XSS via the wp-admin/?page=cpd_metaboxes daytoshow parameter.
CVE-2019-12839
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
In OrangeHRM 4.3.1 and before, there is an input validation error within admin/listMailConfiguration (txtSendmailPath parameter) that allows authenticated attackers to achieve arbitrary command execution.
CVE-2019-12840
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
In Webmin through 1.910, any user authorized to the "Package Updates" module can execute arbitrary commands with root privileges via the data parameter to update.cgi.
CVE-2019-12835
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
formats/xml.cpp in Leanify 0.4.3 allows for a controlled out-of-bounds write in xml_memory_writer::write via characters that require escaping.