efani – A Comprehensive Guide on Silent SMS Denial of Service (DoS) Attack

When delivered to a mobile handset, silent messages, also known as Silent SMS or Stealth SMS “stealth ping”, or “Short Message Type 0”, are not indicated on the display or by an acoustic alert signal. This guide will concentrate on the technicalities of sending a silent SMS, as well as sending multiple incessant silent SMSs to perform a silent SMS denial of service (DoS) attack. These silent messages are increasingly being sent not only to perform DoS attacks but also to force the constant update of users’ or victims’ location (tracking) information.

What is Silent SMS or Flash SMS?

Silent SMS was originally intended to allow operators to detect whether a mobile phone was turned on and test the network without informing the user. They have, however, proven useful in the tracking down of suspects by police in a number of countries.

Using the GSM Network, silent SMS can pinpoint the exact location of a mobile phone. We can find a user by identifying the three antennas closest to him and then triangulating the distance based on the time it takes for a signal to return. When a person moves, their phone’s location is updated; however, the information is not updated immediately. The location of the mobile is instantly updated when a Silent SMS is sent. This is extremely useful because it allows you to locate someone at a specific time based on the airwaves.

ICYMI – In cellular communication networks, the SS7 (Signaling System No. 7) protocols are critical. Unfortunately, SS7 has a number of flaws that a malicious actor can exploit to launch attacks. Location tracking, SMS interception, and other types of signaling attacks are significant examples of these.

[TIP: EFANI’s Black Seal Protection against such hacks such as SS7, location tracking, DDoS, Silent SMS, IMSI Catchers and so on]

The Silent SMS Denial of Service (DoS) attack is one of the more intriguing attacks. A typical DoS attack floods a network with excessive traffic, rendering its computer resources inaccessible to users. The same concept applies to mobile devices.

Source: Croft, N. J., & Olivier, M. S. (2007). A silent SMS denial of service (DoS) attack

The Silent SMS Denial of Service (DoS) attack is one of the more intriguing attacks. A typical DoS attack floods a network with excessive traffic, rendering its computer resources inaccessible to users. The same concept applies to mobile devices. Without the victim’s knowledge, a device can be flooded with silent SMS messages. Texts swamping the victim’s device will utilize the battery abnormally while preventing the device from receiving calls.

Targets Location Tracking

Malefactors who exploit SS7 protocol vulnerabilities frequently target location information and tracking. A silent SMS could be sent to the target mobile device to force it to update the existing (normally the closest) serving base station onto the mobile network in order to identify the target’s location.

The device user will not be notified if a message is received, as in a Silent SMS DoS attack. However, unlike a DoS attack, there are no visible signs that an attack is taking place. As a result, the victim is completely unaware that they are being followed.

SIM cards are also a major target because they use Wireless Internet Browsers (WIB), that are not adequately secured. Telecommunications companies use Over the Air (OTA) technology to communicate with WIBs in order to manage SIM cards.

Evil people can essentially send a silent SMS containing WIB instructions. The instructions are executed once they have been received on the victim’s device. At this point, the malefactor has several options, including obtaining location data, initiating a call, sending an SMS, or even launching a web browser with a particular URL.

The Culprit: Who is behind the Silent SMS attacks?

Though it has reportedly been used by authorities and governments in the past, the decreasing costs of equipment and broadband access have made this attack vector accessible to malefactors with little technical knowledge.

Why are silent SMS attacks so risky?

Cellular attacks that take advantage of the SS7 protocol are nothing new. However, due to the covert nature of silent SMS attacks, it is difficult to detect them before it is too late. As a result, silent SMS attacks are a compliance nightmare. A breach cannot be detected and, as a result, cannot be reported in accordance with the law. Invisible DoS attacks, OTA malware, and unauthorized location tracking are all dangerous, if not disastrous.

It is incumbent to bring this to readers’ attention that not only SS7 attacks are next to impossible to detect when they take place, but they also leave practically no traces in terms of forensics. The forensic investigator has little to no data to extract and analyze from the victim’s device.

This is, of course, unless the victim has an application on their mobile devices that is specifically supposed to detect and triangulate silent SMS.

The investigator may be able to examine the traffic on the cellular network and possibly detect the unprecedented number of messages sent. Sadly, the investigator must have the victim’s mobile in hand to confirm a real-time attack.

Who is vulnerable to a Silent SMS attack?

It is not critical for most users to have their location tracked or to lose wireless access due to a DoS attack. Attackers are most likely to target executives, VIPs, celebrities, crypto enthusiasts, and governments.

Attacks will almost certainly result in significant financial losses for enterprises, whereas national defense is at stake for governments. They must also consider the possible harm that could be accomplished if an attacker is able to install malware on the device by exploiting WIB vulnerabilities on SIM cards.

The much-needed protection

The one and only effective way to identify and prevent such attack vectors is at the network level (speaking of mobile here). This necessitates the use of EFANI’s Black Seal Protection aimed at “plugging” the security vulnerabilities left by the primitive SS7 protocol, which is still in use presently.

Currently, most of the defense against silent SMS DoS attacks is left to individuals (going through such emotional stress) and cybersecurity professionals in companies, who (unfortunately) have little or no tools to do so. For telecom companies since this pandemic means taking a global approach to SS7 protection. It thus necessitates the implementation of appropriate safeguards and security mechanisms to prevent their networks and registered user devices from such hacks.

Unfortunately, traditional cell phone companies are not doing much to protect you. But it is not all bad news, there is a cellular phone company named efani that has stepped up and made it more difficult for hackers. efani offers the nation’s most secure mobile service and claims a 100% success rate.

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*11 Layer Proprietary Military Grade Security
*Unlimited Call/Text/Data within US/Canada & Mexico
*5G Access on America’s Largest & Fastest Network
*Wi-Fi Calling
*Keep your Current Number
*International Data-Roaming
*$5 Million Insurance Coverage (includes: Crypto, Banking, Brokerage & Other Losses)

Try efani RISK-FREE for 60 days with a 100% Money Back Guarantee!

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CynergisTek Reports Supply Chain Risks Continue Driving Demand for Vendor Security

CynergisTek (NYSE American: CTEK), leading cybersecurity, privacy, compliance, and IT audit firm helping organizations in highly regulated industries navigate emerging security and privacy issues, announces a one-year Vendor Security Management service agreement with a nationally recognized children’s hospital with multiple locations.

The healthcare industry relies on third-party vendors to deliver a wide range of goods and services from cleaning services to cloud storage, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers, and consultants. To provide fundamental support for patient care delivery, many of these vendors, also known as Business Associates, have access to an organization’s network through API connections or share critical information including Protected Health Information (PHI). Ransomware hackers either take down a third party, causing a domino effect, or use a third party to gain access to a Covered Entity’s (providers, health plans, and clearinghouses) environment. Complete article at Yahoo News

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Sadly, traditional cell phone companies are not doing much to protect you. But it is not all bad news, there is a cellular phone company named efani that has stepped up and made it more difficult for hackers. efani offers the nation’s most secure mobile service and claims a 100% success rate.

The SAFE plan comes with a 100% money-back guarantee for 60-days. and includes:

*11 Layer Proprietary Military Grade Security
*Unlimited Call/Text/Data within US/Canada & Mexico
*5G Access on America’s Largest & Fastest Network
*Wi-Fi Calling
*Keep your Current Number
*International Data-Roaming
*$5 Million Insurance Coverage (includes: Crypto, Banking, Brokerage & Other Losses)

Try efani RISK-FREE for 60 days with a 100% Money Back Guarantee!

Take action NOW and secure your assets, privacy, and your phone by calling toll free 1-833-693-3264 or visit the website below at efani

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efani Bluetooth & Perceived Security Threats – $5 Million Insurance

Bluetooth is best recognized as the wireless technology that enables hands-free earpieces and uses the Internet of Things to connect your phone to audio, navigation, and gadgets (such as, IoT). Bluetooth, as useful as it is for productivity and comfort, can also pose significant security-based mobile threats. While most of the issues that were identified five to ten years ago have been rectified, others still exist. There’s also cause to be wary when it comes to new, as-yet-undiscovered privacy-related issues.

Some perceived benefits include:

  • The ability to replace cables is one of the most important advantages of Bluetooth technology. Bluetooth technology can be used to replace a number of cords, including those used for peripheral devices (e.g., mouse and keyboard connections), printers, and wireless headsets and earbuds that connect to personal computers (PCs) or mobile phones.
  • File sharing is simple. A piconet can be formed by a Bluetooth-enabled device to allow file-sharing capabilities with other Bluetooth devices, such as laptops.
  • Synchronization over the air. Bluetooth allows Bluetooth-enabled devices to automatically synchronise. Bluetooth, for example, allows contact information from electronic address books and calendars to be synchronized.
  • Internet access is required. Bluetooth devices that have an Internet connection can share it with other Bluetooth devices. A laptop, for example, can use a Bluetooth connection to have a mobile phone establish a dial-up connection, allowing the laptop to connect to the Internet via the phone.

As technology advances, phone hackers, often known as “phreakers,” have an even greater edge. The following is a simplified list of Bluetooth-related attacks:

Vulnerabilities in General Software

Bluetooth software isn’t perfect, especially in devices that use the newer Bluetooth 5 specification. It’s almost unheard of to come across software that has no security flaws. It’s easy for attackers to identify new, previously undiscovered vulnerabilities in Bluetooth devices, as Finnish security researchers Tommi Mäkilä, Jukka Taimisto, and Miia Vuontisjärvi demonstrated in 2011. Charges for pricey premium-rate or international calls, data theft, or drive-by virus downloads are all possible consequences.

To protect yourself from these vulnerabilities, make sure to turn off your Bluetooth when you’re not using it.

SNARF Attack

This attack is usually only possible when a phone is connected to the network in “discovery” or “visible” mode. Setting the phone to “invisible” mode was assumed to stop the attacks, however, tools have lately been developed on the internet that can overcome even these settings. SNARF attacks may now be set up on practically any phone. The only guaranteed way to protect yourself from SNARF threats is to turn off Bluetooth on your phone when you don’t need it.

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Eavesdropping

Bluetooth is a wireless communication standard named after Harald “Bluetooth” Gormsson, a Viking king who worked to unite various 10th-century European groups. Criminals should not be able to listen in on your data or phone calls if you use Bluetooth encryption.

Eavesdropping, in other words, should not be an issue. Older Bluetooth devices that use outdated versions of the Bluetooth protocol, on the other hand, are likely to be vulnerable to unpatched security flaws.

To counter this issue, prohibit the usage of Bluetooth 1.x, 2.0, or 4.0-LE devices and require that devices use the most recent versions and protocols.

Denial of Service

Malicious attackers can cause your devices to crash, prevent you from receiving calls, and drain your power. To counteract this threat, make sure your Bluetooth is turned off while you’re not using it.

The range of Bluetooth is far greater than you might believe.

Bluetooth is intended to function as a “personal area network.” That is to say, Bluetooth should not be used to connect devices that are more than a few feet apart. However, simply keeping a safe distance between you and a possible attacker isn’t enough; hackers have been known to effectively communicate over considerably longer distances using directional, high-gain antennas.

BLUEBUG Attack

The BLUEBUG exploit establishes the phone’s serial connection, giving the attacker access to all of the phone’s AT commands. This allows the attacker to make and receive phone calls, as well as access internet data services. It’s also been revealed that if the phone is connected to a GSM network, it’s easy to listen in on nearby phones’ chats. If executed correctly, this attack takes about 2 seconds to finish and leaves almost no sign of its intrusion. Incoming calls can then be routed to other devices by an attacker.

Backdoor Attack

Another security breach is the BACKDOOR attack, which works by establishing an unauthorized connection to the target’s phone. This attack, on the other hand, works by creating a trust relationship using Bluetooth’s pairing mechanism, but then removes the attacker device from the pair list after the link is made. As a result, unless the device’s owner is watching the pair list at the precise moment a connection is created, it’s doubtful that they’ll realize the attacker is still linked after the pair has been deleted from the list.

The attacker will then gain access to all of the information that a “trusted” connection would provide, but without the owner’s permission. This would allow access to the phone’s authorized data, as well as phone calls and instant messages. This attack, however, is more limited than the SNARF attack because it only grants access to information marked for trusted connections.

WARNIBBLING

WARNIBBLING is a hacking technique in which a phreaker tries to locate and access as many vulnerable Bluetooth phones as possible. To sniff for accessible phones, they often utilize laptops or PCs with high gain antennas and sophisticated software, such as Redfang. Rather than staying still, warnibblers will wander around, mapping as many phones as they can. Some drive, while others move from café to café, but the end consequence is the same: they frequently compromise the safety of huge groups of people.

BLUEJACKING

BLUEJACKING, unlike prior attacks, does not provide adversary access to any data. Instead, a tiny flaw in the Bluetooth pairing process can be exploited to send a message to a user. This is usually innocuous, as attackers employed BLUEJACKING to express themselves, spread counter-culture propaganda, or simply demonstrate their ability to breach a consumer’s security.

Recommended Practices

  • Bluetooth technology necessitates the development of an organizational wireless security policy.
  • It is necessary to make sure that all Bluetooth users on the network are aware of their security responsibilities when using Bluetooth.
  • To fully understand the organization’s Bluetooth security posture, detailed security assessments must be performed at regular intervals.
  • It is necessary to guarantee that wireless devices and networks that use Bluetooth technology are well understood and documented from an architectural standpoint.
  • Users should be given a list of precautions to take in order to better protect their portable Bluetooth devices from theft.
  • Change the Bluetooth device’s default settings to reflect the organization’s security policy; Bluetooth devices should be set to the lowest necessary and sufficient power level to keep transmissions within the organization’s secure perimeter.
  • PIN numbers that are suitably random and long should be chosen. Avoid PINs that are static or weak, such as all zeros.
  • If a Bluetooth device is misplaced or stolen, users should unpair it from all other Bluetooth devices with which it was previously associated.
  • Antivirus software must be installed on Bluetooth-enabled hosts, which are regularly attacked by malware.
  • Bluetooth software patches and upgrades must be thoroughly tested and deployed on a regular basis.
  • Users should not accept any transmissions from unidentified or suspicious devices. Messages, data, and photos are examples of these forms of transfer.

See the bigger picture

Bluetooth is a wireless technology that can do a lot more than merely connect items wirelessly. Bluetooth version 4.0 offers faster data rates, a longer range, and improved security. It’s critical to create and convey company policies for mobile device security, including Bluetooth, so that your organization’s data isn’t jeopardized and your end users can operate safely while on the go. Keep in mind that mobile devices provide a range of threats that must be handled, and Bluetooth security is just one piece of the mobile security puzzle that is sometimes disregarded. For both home and business security, make sure to include mobile device security as part of your overall cybersecurity strategy.

Unfortunately, traditional cell phone companies are not doing much to protect you. But it is not all bad news, there is a cellular phone company named efani that has stepped up and made it more difficult for hackers. efani offers the nation’s most secure mobile service and claims a 100% success rate.

The SAFE plan comes with a 100% money-back guarantee for 60-days. and includes:

*11 Layer Proprietary Military Grade Security
*Unlimited Call/Text/Data within US/Canada & Mexico
*5G Access on America’s Largest & Fastest Network
*Wi-Fi Calling
*Keep your Current Number
*International Data-Roaming
*$5 Million Insurance Coverage (includes: Crypto, Banking, Brokerage & Other Losses)

Try efani RISK-FREE for 60 days with a 100% Money Back Guarantee!

Take action NOW and secure your assets, privacy, and your phone by calling toll free 1-833-693-3264 or visit the website below

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