Saturday, December 2, 2023

NFC Beaming Vulnerability in Android Let Hackers to Infect Vulnerable Devices With Malware

NFC expanded as Near Field Communication, contains a set of protocols that allows Android devices to establish communication at a very shortest range. NFC used for contactless payments, pairing of devices, file sharing, and access control.

Nightwatch Cybersecurity noted that “NFC beaming of applications between devices using Android OS bypasses some security controls such as install unknown application,” this let a malicious phone or malicious payment terminal to install malware on the phone.

NFC Vulnerability

The NFC vulnerability affects Android version 8 (Oreo) and higher and the vulnerability can be tracked as CVE-2019-2114 and it was fixed in October Android Security Bulletin.

Starting from Android 8, users need to enable permission for individual apps to install unknown APK files. But if any system application will be “automatically whitelisted and would not prompt the user for this permission,” researchers said.

The NFC is one of the applications that have the permission to install other applications, if the NFC and Android Beam enabled devices taps any malicious phone or malicious NFC payment terminal, this let malware to be installed on the device bypassing “install unknown apps” prompt.

NFC Vulnerability
Install Unknown Apps

The “Install unknown apps” can be found under settings >> special access, by clicking “Install unknown apps” you can find which apps are allowed to perform this action.

Following steps to replicate a malicious drive-by install:

1. Setup two phones with NFC and Android beam enabled.
2 .Download any APK file on the “sender” phone (something like
this APK from GitHub).
3. Go to the file manager in the “sender” phone, tap the file and select “Share”. Then select “Android Beam” as the sharing method,
4. Bring two phones together and complete the transfer.
5. After this is done, go to the receiver phone, tap the “Beam completed” notification, and tap the file. It will skip directly to the install prompt, bypassing the “Install unknown apps” check.

Nightwatch Cybersecurity submitted the report to Google and the vulnerability is classified as high. The vulnerability was tested by researchers on Android 9 and Android 8.10.

Google released a fix and the users are recommended to update their devices, with the update “install unknown apps” permission in setting listed as “not allowed” to install applications.

You can follow us on LinkedinTwitterFacebook for daily Cybersecurity and hacking news updates.


Latest articles

Active Attacks Targeting Google Chrome & ownCloud Flaws: CISA Warns

The CISA announced two known exploited vulnerabilities active attacks targeting Google Chrome & own...

Cactus Ransomware Exploiting Qlik Sense code execution Vulnerability

A new Cactus Ransomware was exploited in the code execution vulnerability to Qlik Sense...

Hackers Bypass Antivirus with ScrubCrypt Tool to Install RedLine Malware

The ScrubCrypt obfuscation tool has been discovered to be utilized in attacks to disseminate the RedLine Stealer...

Hotel’s Hacked Logins Let Attacker Steal Guest Credit Cards

According to a recent report by Secureworks, a well-planned and advanced phishing attack was...

Critical Zoom Vulnerability Let Attackers Take Over Meetings

Zoom, the most widely used video conferencing platform has been discovered with a critical...

Hackers Using Weaponized Invoice to Deliver LUMMA Malware

Hackers use weaponized invoices to exploit trust in financial transactions, embedding malware or malicious...

US-Seized Crypto Currency Mixer Used by North Korean Lazarus Hackers

The U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned the famous cryptocurrency mixer Sinbad after it was claimed...

API Attack Simulation Webinar

Live API Attack Simulation

In the upcoming webinar, Karthik Krishnamoorthy, CTO and Vivek Gopalan, VP of Products at Indusface demonstrate how APIs could be hacked.The session will cover:an exploit of OWASP API Top 10 vulnerability, a brute force account take-over (ATO) attack on API, a DDoS attack on an API, how a WAAP could bolster security over an API gateway

Related Articles