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[ISN] Hack Turns Verizon Femtocell Into Spy Tool


By Chloe Albanesius
July 15, 2013

A pair of researchers this week revealed a vulnerability within Verizon Wireless femtocells that allowed hackers to spy on the carrier's customers.

Tom Ritter and Doug DePerry from iSEC Partners told Reuters that the glitch within the femtocells, which boost wireless signals in areas with poor reception, allowed for spying on text messages, photos, and phone calls.

A software update rolled out by Verizon fixed the issue uncovered by iSEC, but the duo said that talented hackers could find ways to further breach the femtocells, according to Reuters, including those offered by other carriers.

In a statement, Verizon Wireless said it routinely monitors its devices for security issues, but is sometimes approached by third parties that have uncovered other security issues. iSEC "identified an issue that was fixed in March of this year on all Network Extender devices," the company said. "The fix prevents the Network Extender from being compromised in the same manner. There were no reports of any customer impact."


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