Wireless Mice, Keyboards Offer Cyber-Attack Route for Laptops, PCs

By eWEEK Staff  |  Posted 2016-02-26 Print this article Print

DAILY VIDEO: Laptops, PCs open to cyber-attack through wireless mice, keyboards; Illusive Networks to give defenders an attacker's view of security; Facebook gives users five more choices than 'like' to emote; and there's more.


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Today's topics include the reason why laptops and PCs are open to cyber-attack through wireless mice and keyboards, Foxconn's decision to delay its takeover of Sharp, how Illusive Networks gives defenders an attacker's view of security and the five new "reactions" available to Facebook users besides the familiar thumbs up button.

The communications between hundreds of millions of wireless mice and keyboards and the computers they're connected to could be exploited to allow an attacker to take control of a targeted laptop or desktop PC, according to researchers from communications security firm Bastille.

The attack, dubbed “MouseJacking,” exploits the weak security of the custom communications protocols used by many wireless mice and keyboards, such as those from vendors Logitech, Microsoft and Dell, the company stated.

Foxconn's $6.24 billion takeover offer for Sharp has apparently been put on hold at the last moment while the Taiwanese electronics parts assembler looks more deeply into Sharp's financial liabilities before signing the deal.

Sharp's board had voted to sell itself to Foxconn Technology Group on Feb. 25 after being pursued in a bidding war, but the completion of the deal was halted hours after the Sharp vote by Foxconn as it analyzes the potential financial risks the deal might entail.

How does an enterprise network look to an attacker?

That's the question that Israeli startup Illusive Networks is now tackling with its Illusive 3.0 security platform, which aims to provide an attacker's view in a bid to help organizations both understand risks and defend against cyber-attacks.

Illusive Networks is the first company launched by Israeli cyber-security foundry Team8, which earlier this week announced a new $23 million round of funding.

Facebook has now made available five more choices besides simply "liking" a post, picture or video on its pages. Many of the social network's 1.5 billion users had been asking for more options for years.

Facebook on Feb. 24 finally enabled the use of more choices, which it calls "reactions," which look like the typical "emoticons" available on other email services and social networks. These are "Love," "Haha," "Wow," "Sad" and "Angry," to sit alongside the old and limited standby "Like."


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