Bluesnarfing refers to the act of intercepting unencrypted wireless Bluetooth transmissions. The name gets the word “blues” from the original Bluetooth logo color, and “snarf” because it means to grab or steal.
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How Does Bluesnarfing Work?
Bluesnarfers use tools like BlueSnarf (a Windows-based bluesnarfing application) in order to access data sent in clear text without encryption. Data may include emails, texts, contacts, photos, calendar events, and more depending on what apps were installed on the targeted phone.
Bluesnarfing, or bluejacking is a way for people to send messages to each other using a Bluetooth connection. The sender sends the message via Bluetooth and it displays on the recipients’ phone as an incoming call.
This can be done without the user’s knowledge since there are no permissions needed in order to connect with someone else through Bluetooth. Some phones will show you who sent you the message but others won’t so this form of communication is not foolproof.
Bluesnarfing is often used by hackers because once your device connects with theirs they have access to all sorts of information about what you’re doing on your phone including passwords, emails, texts, contacts, etc.
It should also be noted that bluesnarfers must first know the phone’s Bluetooth address. This can be found by doing a little snooping around on the targeted device, but if you are concerned about your privacy it might be wise to turn off Bluetooth when not using it or to install anti-virus software that will alert you if someone tries to connect to your phone via Bluetooth.
Bluesnarfing is a real threat for business executives because hackers can access everything on their phones including all of their contacts which could lead them directly back to the company they work for.
With this information in hand, hackers could then use other means such as social engineering or spear phishing attacks in order to gain access to other areas of the business which could prove disastrous.
How to Prevent Sluesnarfing?
The best way for business leaders and employees alike to avoid bluesnarfing is to keep Bluetooth turned off unless it’s in use, to install anti-virus software that will alert you when someone tries to connect via Bluetooth, and to not put company secrets into personal devices.
If your business uses phones or laptops for work purposes you need to implement a policy that requires employees to password protect the device and not let anyone borrow it, even if just for a few minutes. This is because once they have access to the phone or computer they can download data from the hard drive including all of its files and applications. If there are confidential or sensitive company files stored on it then hackers could easily gain access.
Though this method isn’t foolproof, implementing these policies should limit your exposure when it comes to corporate espionage.