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[ISN] Vodafone Sure Signal femto flaws could enable widespread phone hacking


By Phil Muncaster
14 July 2011

Self-styled security research collective The Hacker's Choice has revealed flaws in Vodafone's Sure Signal femtocell product which it claims could allow hackers to listen to other Vodafone UK users' calls, access their voicemails and even make calls via the victim's phone.

The revelations come as media mogul Rupert Murdoch's empire comes under increasing pressure as cases of alleged widespread voicemail hacking by News International journalists continue to come to light.

The Hacker's Choice explained in a blog post and more fully in a wiki entry that it had managed to reverse-engineer the equipment, which acts as a home router to boost a mobile phone's 3G signal when indoors, and turn it into a "full blown 3G/UMTC/WCDMA interception device".

The group said that it found two main flaws. The first allows anyone, not just registered customers, to use the femtocell device. The second turns it into an International Mobile Subscriber Identity grabber for any phone within 50 metres.


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