Errata Security Shows Laptops Are Chattering

Throughout the Black Hat conference hall, laptops babbled incessantly about their users. Errata Security's Robert Graham and David Maynor just sat back and sipped from the data firehose. Except, that is, when they jumped to hide an attendee's user name and password for whatever wireless service happened to appear in the flow of information that was scrolling down the overhead projection of Graham's laptop screen.

It was part of a demonstration the duo gave on Thursday of the 1.0 code-only version of a new tool called Ferret that prints data to a command line. That data includes everything that seeps out of your wireless device: Wi-Fi access points cached on your PC, the last IP address you used (requested by DHCP), your NetBIOS name, your log-in ID, and a list of servers (via a NetBIOS request) you want connections to. "Think about what happens when you start up your laptop," CEO Graham said. "The programs set to autostart look for resources like the intranet homepage and shared drives, e-mail clients and IM clients."

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News source: eWeek

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