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Brief Intro to Hardware Attacks

Mini-Module

This mini-module concisely introduces hardware attacks, covering Bluetooth risks and attacks, Cryptanalysis Side-Channel Attacks, and vulnerabilities like Spectre and Meltdown. It delves into both historical and modern Bluetooth hacking techniques, explores the principles of cryptanalysis and different side-channel attacks, and outlines microprocessor design, optimisation strategies and vulnerabilities, such as Spectre and Meltdown.

4.59

Created by PandaSt0rm

Medium General

Summary

This mini-module is designed as a compact and concise introduction to various hardware attacks.

It serves to cover three specific topics:

  • Uncovering risks associated with Bluetooth technology and various Bluetooth attacks.
  • Learning about Cryptanalysis Side-Channel Attacks.
  • Understanding the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities.

In the first section, we explore the historical aspect of Bluetooth hacking, detailing various legacy attacks such as Bluesnarfing, Bluejacking, BlueSmacking, and Bluebugging. As we move into the contemporary era of Bluetooth hacking, we examine more sophisticated attacks like BlueBorne, KNOB, and BIAS.

Next, we transition into Cryptanalysis side-channel attacks. We look at a brief history and the principles of cryptanalysis before delving into different types of side-channel attacks, including timing attacks, power-monitoring attacks, and acoustic cryptanalysis.

Subsequently, we shift our attention towards microprocessors - the core of any computing device. You'll learn a bit about their design process, encompassing architectural design, logic design, circuit design, physical design, and verification. Furthermore, we'll discuss a few optimisation strategies, such as pipelining, speculative execution, and caching.

The final section will look at microprocessor vulnerabilities, focusing on Spectre and Meltdown and a few mitigation strategies, including Retpoline, Compiler Barriers, Kernel Page-Table Isolation (KPTI).


CREST CCT INF-related Sections:

  • All sections

Introduction


In this digital age, understanding potential vulnerabilities and their mitigation is paramount. However, these vulnerabilities are not purely software-based. Significant threats exist that a simple software update cannot resolve. Hardware security requires serious consideration, extending from specific technologies like Bluetooth to the microchips powering our digital age.

This mini-module provides a theoretical focus on Bluetooth hacking methods, cryptanalysis side-channel attacks, and microprocessor vulnerabilities.

Bluetooth Hacking

Bluetooth technology, designed for short-range wireless communication between devices, is ubiquitous in today's digital era. Despite its convenience, it opens up a new attack surface for hackers. In this section, we'll dive into several types of Bluetooth hacking:

  • Bluesnarfing: A cyber-attack involving unauthorised access to information from wireless devices through Bluetooth.
  • Bluejacking: An attack that sends unsolicited messages to Bluetooth-enabled devices.
  • BlueSmacking: A Denial-of-Service attack that overwhelms a device's Bluetooth connection.
  • Bluebugging: A technique used to gain control over a device via Bluetooth.
  • BlueBorne: A set of vulnerabilities that allow attackers to take control of devices, spread malware, or perform other malicious activities via Bluetooth.
  • KNOB (Key Negotiation of Bluetooth): An attack that manipulates the data encryption process during Bluetooth connection establishment, weakening security.
  • BIAS (Bluetooth Impersonation AttackS): This attack exploits a vulnerability in the pairing process, allowing an attacker to impersonate a trusted device.

Cryptanalysis Side-Channel Attacks

Cryptanalysis side-channel attacks are an intriguing topic in cybersecurity. These attacks utilise information gained from implementing and running a computer system rather than brute force or theoretical weaknesses in algorithms. We'll discuss:

  • A short history of side-channel attacks
  • Timing Attacks: These exploit the correlation between the computation time of cryptographic algorithms and the secrets they process.
  • Power-Monitoring Attacks: These monitor the power consumption of a device to determine what data it is processing.

Microprocessor Vulnerabilities

Microprocessors form the backbone of any computational device. However, their complex design and optimisation strategies often introduce vulnerabilities. We'll explore what microprocessors are, and two notorious microprocessor vulnerabilities:

  • Spectre and Meltdown

As well as delve into mitigation strategies such as:

  • Retpoline: A binary modification technique used to thwart branch target injection.
  • Compiler modifications
  • Kernel Page Table Isolation (KPTI): A technique used to isolate the kernel's memory space from user space processes.
  • Microcode updates

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Relevant Paths

This module progresses you towards the following Paths

CREST CCT INF Preparation

This is a skill path to prepare you for CREST's CCT INF exam. The following CCT INF syllabus areas (IDs) are covered: A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, A8, A9, A10, B1, B2, B4, B5, C1, C2, C3, C4, C6, C7, D1, D2, D5, D9, D10, D13, D14, D15, D18, D19, E1, E2, E3 E6, E7, E8, E9, E11, E13, E14, E15, E16, E17, E18, E19, E20, E25, E26, F1, F2, F3, F4, F5, F6, F7, F8, F9, F10, F11, F12, F13, F15, F16, G1, G2, G3, G4, G5, G6, G7, G8, H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, H6, H7, H8, H9, H10, H11, H12, H13, H14, H15, H16, H17, H19, H20, H21, H23, H24, H25, H26, H27, H28, H29, H30, H31, H32, H33, H34, H35, H36, H37, H38, H40, I1, I2, I3, I4, I6, K1, K2, K3, K4, N1, N2. Take your time to complete all related sections and when you are ready you can book your CREST exam through the following link. https://www.crest-approved.org/certification-careers/crest-certifications/crest-certified-infrastructure-tester/

Hard Path Sections 945 Sections
Required: 12510
Reward: +2630
Path Modules
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Path Sections 8 Sections
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This mini-module concisely introduces hardware attacks, covering Bluetooth risks and attacks, Cryptanalysis Side-Channel Attacks, and vulnerabilities like Spectre and Meltdown. It delves into both historical and modern Bluetooth hacking techniques, explores the principles of cryptanalysis and different side-channel attacks, and outlines microprocessor design, optimisation strategies and vulnerabilities, such as Spectre and Meltdown.
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Medium
Path Sections 22 Sections
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Path Sections 19 Sections
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Path Sections 23 Sections
Reward: +100
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DACL Attacks I
Mini-Module
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Reward: +100
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Medium
Path Sections 27 Sections
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Path Sections 28 Sections
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Path Sections 33 Sections
Reward: +20 UPDATED
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Medium
Path Sections 13 Sections
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Easy
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Easy
Path Sections 13 Sections
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Path Sections 11 Sections
Reward: +20
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Medium
Path Sections 14 Sections
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Medium
Path Sections 17 Sections
Reward: +10
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Reward: +20
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Path Sections 16 Sections
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Medium
Path Sections 12 Sections
Reward: +100
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Medium
Path Sections 11 Sections
Reward: +10
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Medium
Path Sections 11 Sections
Reward: +20
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Medium
Path Sections 12 Sections
Reward: +20
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Medium
Path Sections 14 Sections
Reward: +20
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Medium
Path Sections 18 Sections
Reward: +20
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Medium
Path Sections 15 Sections
Reward: +100
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Hard
Path Sections 18 Sections
Reward: +100
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Medium
Path Sections 15 Sections
Reward: +100
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Hard
Path Sections 20 Sections
Reward: +100
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Medium
Path Sections 33 Sections
Reward: +20 UPDATED
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Medium
Path Sections 13 Sections
Reward: +20
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Easy
Path Sections 16 Sections
Reward: +20
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Easy
Path Sections 8 Sections
Reward: +20
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Hard
Path Sections 17 Sections
Reward: +200
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Hard
Path Sections 15 Sections
Reward: +100
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