On the Insecurity of Vehicles Against Protocol-Level Bluetooth Threats

Jul 14, 2022 00:00
ASRG WORLD Series Webinar, July'22

In this webinar we talk about, Protocol-Level Bluetooth Threats (PLBT), a novel and relevant class of threats for automotive security. Specifically, we explain what they are, why they are relevant, and how they can be evaluated on modern cars. We also report our PLBT evaluation results on five popular In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) units used by KIA, Toyota, Suzuki, and Skoda on cars manufactured between 2014 and 2021. For example, we show that is trivial to impersonate a trusted smartphone to commercial IVIs using an attack chain that we developed in recent years (KNOB+BIAS attacks). As a result of a successful impersonation, an attacker can exfiltrate sensitive data stored on the IVI and send malicious commands to the IVI without being detected.

We note that PLBTs are effective on any Bluetooth-enabled IVI as they exploit protocol flaws in the Bluetooth standard itself. Hence, we expect that the vast majority of the IVIs in the market is vulnerable to the KNOB+BIAS attack chain and other PLBTs. This fact should clearly motivate why it is important to investigate and fix PLBTs in the automotive industry.

For more information please refer to our research paper presented this year at the IEEE Workshop On Offensive Technologies (WOOT) titled On the Insecurity of Vehicles Against Protocol-Level Bluetooth Threats available here.

Daniele Antonioli
Daniele Antonioli
Assistant Professor

Research in cyber-physical and wireless system security

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