"The researchers tested this type of attack on more than 17 devices and all were tested positive". Bluetooth connections are characterized by "agreeing" on two devices you want to pair up.
In a security advisory from The Bluetooth Special Interest Group - which oversees standards for the technology everywhere - the group has called attention to the flaw discovered by researchers at the Center for IT-Security, Privacy and Accountability.
Millions of Bluetooth devices may be affected by a serious security flaw that lets hackers intercept data transferred between two devices. However, for this to happen, it would be necessary, first, for the attacker to be present and within range within the process of connection between the devices. However, to utilise the KNOB attack hackers need to be nearby the Bluetooth source and have a narrow time window to execute the attack.
In brief: Researchers have found a flaw in Bluetooth's authentication protocols which can be exploited in a clever, man-in-the-middle attack between two paired devices.
A team of Bluetooth Researchers have found this major flaw.
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Thankfully, this particular vulnerability is not easy to exploit. Being a standard-compliant attack it is expected to be effective on any firmware implementing the Bluetooth specification, regardless of the Bluetooth version.
For years, Bluetooth connections had stood out for their effectiveness and security, something they could boast, until today. The information can affect smartphones, computers, cars, speakers, wearables, IoT devices and many more.
"The Bluetooth SIG will also include testing for this new recommendation within our Bluetooth Qualification Program". The Bluetooth Core Specification has also been changed to require manufacturers to hardcode a minimum encryption key length of seven octets (characters) in future devices. "In addition, since not all Bluetooth specifications mandate a minimum encryption key length, it is possible that some vendors may have developed Bluetooth products where the length of the encryption key used on a BR/EDR connection could be set by an attacking device down to a single octet". Once this is done, the attacker will try out all the combinations and use brute force for pairing with the device.