wifi attack?

Discussion in 'other security issues & news' started by hierophant, Aug 4, 2010.

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  1. hierophant

    hierophant Registered Member

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    Having nothing better to do last week, I decided to survey wifi routers in my area. I wasn't doing anything sophisticated, just stopping randomly, and refreshing the list of available networks on my notebook.

    And would you know it, someone must have called the cops :eek: I told the officer that I just wanted to test my notebook, and don't have a wifi router (which is true). He said "carry on", and left. And then my notebook crashed, and wouldn't boot! -- bluescreening just before the login prompt. So I went home.

    After a few boot attempts, and searching for the Win XP disk, everything started working fine again. The next day, I took it to a local shop, and they found nothing wrong with the wifi card.

    And then I remembered that I'd been through this before. Traveling to New York for a meeting, I got a room right next to a temporary foreign ministry. It was very freaky. When the elevator door opened, I was presented with a crowd of about 20 military types in dark suits, wearing earbuds!

    Anyway, after a brief chat, I unpacked and sat down to check my email and whatever. I was just about to connect to the hotel's free wifi, and the machine bluescreened. Although it would boot after that, it randomly bluescreened if I had wifi turned on.

    After reinstalling Win XP the following week, the machine seemed fine. It's been a few years, and I've had no problems with it until last week.

    Would anyone like to speculate?
     
  2. chronomatic

    chronomatic Registered Member

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    Watch out!
     

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  3. hierophant

    hierophant Registered Member

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    That wasn't very helpful :ouch: Funny, and not helpful ...

    So, are you saying that I should just burn it in my fireplace?

    Or is there perhaps something interesting on it that could be recovered?

    Or are you implying that I'm over-the-top paranoid?

    FWIW, it's an old machine, and I just use it while traveling. And it never connects to my home network.
     
  4. Searching_ _ _

    Searching_ _ _ Registered Member

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    In my readings, I have found that a wnic is like an ethernet switch or hub.

    I wonder if there is a way to sniff to see what they were transmitting to cause the BSOD?
    Was it some form of signal jammer?

    Have you ever run license plates on the MIB? Always comes back to a block not yet in use. :D
     
  5. hierophant

    hierophant Registered Member

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    Thanks, Searching_ _ _.

    Two hypotheses come to mind. They could have been jamming the notebook, but not loading any code. However, if that were so, why would the effects have persisted, but just transiently? That is, if the jamming signals had been strong enough to physically damage the wnic, how could it have recovered?

    Alternatively, they could have loaded code. However, if an attacker were attempting to install a rootkit, keylogger or whatever, why would they want to alert me by bluescreening the machine?

    Symantec Endpoint Security on that machine finds nada. What would be the best tools to find what's most likely there (if anything)?
     
  6. Searching_ _ _

    Searching_ _ _ Registered Member

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    If it is specific attacks and not bugginess of system;

    Would errors in the cpu cause a BSOD?
    If they were jamming frequencies, would some of those frequecies affect the cpu's operation?

    Radar can affect computer equipment.
    I remember seeing a video where someone hooked up a cisco router to a radar gun to inject code into computers from a distance.
    I don't know if it was possible to inject code this way, but a cool idea.

    Microwave ovens can affect computer equipment.
    I try to keep my surfing computer at least 25 feet from my microwave oven.
    Closer than that and my wifi connection is interupted during operation of the microwave. No BSOD though.
     
  7. hierophant

    hierophant Registered Member

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    Thanks, Searching_ _ _. It's going on the shelf until I have time to mess with it.

    Perhaps he hit it with his radar gun. Or perhaps it's just broken.
     
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