Bug on `Network extender` allowed confidential data to be accessed by hackers

Last Updated: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 23:54

Washington: `Network extender` which provides extended cell-phone network coverage in low-coverage zones, reportedly had major security loophole providing access to attackers and revealing mobile phones` calls, texts and photos, a new study has revealed.

Researchers at iSEC Partners discovered the security loophole in Femtocells `network extenders` which are compact boxes and can be deployed in hard-to-reach spots like the top of an apartment building or a home in the mountains for network coverage.

iSEC Partners senior security consultant Tom Ritter said that the bug allowed tracking of everything a phone would send to a cell phone tower like phone calls, text messages, picture messages and mobile web surfing.

Verizon and Samsung manufacturing Verizon`s network extenders said that the problem has been fixed in all of the Femtocells.

Although iSEC`s study focused on femtocells operating on Verizon`s 3G CDMA network, the company believes similar holes could exist on other network extenders.

iSEC Partners senior security consultant Tom Ritter said that some level of technical skills is required to break in the devices, however, people are learning those skills in college and it is within the realm of people working at home.

Analysts predict that as many as 50 million Femtocells network extenders will be in use by 2014, the report added.


First Published: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - 23:51
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