Broadcast Engineer at BellMedia, Computer history buff, compulsive deprecated, disparate hardware hoarder, R/C, robots, arduino, RF, and everything in between.
1821 stories
·
3 followers

Stupid Security In A Security System

1 Share

alarm

[Yaehob]‘s parents have a security system in their house, and when they wanted to make a few changes to their alarm rules – not arming the bathroom at night – an installer would come out, plug a box into the main panel, press a few buttons, and charge 150 €. Horrified at the aspect of spending that much money to flip a few bits, [yaehob] set out to get around the homeowner lockout on the alarm system, and found security where he wasn’t expecting.

Opening the main panel for the alarm system, [yaehob] was greeted with a screeching noise. This was the obvious in retrospect tamper-evident seal on the alarm box, easily silenced by entering a code on the keypad. The alarm, however, would not arm anymore, making the task of getting ‘installer-level’ access on the alarm system a top priority.

After finding a DE-9 serial port on the main board, [yaehob] went to the manufacturer’s website thinking he could download some software. The website does have the software available, but only for authorized distributors, installers, and resellers. You can register as one, though, and no, there is no verification the person filling out a web form is actually a distributor, installer, or reseller.dist

Looking at the installer and accompanying documentation, [yaehob] could see everything, but could not modify anything. To do that would require the installer password, which, according to the documentation was between four and six characters. The system also responded quickly, so brute force was obviously the answer here.

After writing up a quick script to go through all the possible passwords, [yaehob] started plugging numbers into the controller board. Coming back a bit later, he noticed something familiar about what was returned when the system finally let him in. A quick peek at where his brute force app confirmed his suspicions; the installer’s code was his postal code.

From the installer’s point of view, this somewhat makes sense. Any tech driving out to punch a few numbers into a computer and charge $200 will always know the postal code of where he’s driving to. From a security standpoint, holy crap this is bad.

Now that [yaehob]‘s parents are out from under the thumb of the alarm installer, he’s also tacked on a little bit of security of his own; the installer’s code won’t work anymore. It’s now changed to the house number.


Filed under: security hacks
Read the whole story
Share this story
Delete

LISTEN: Radioactive watches, love gloves, iPhone 6, keyboard wrist pad

1 Share
Brought to you by Automatic, an auto accessory that talks to your car’s onboard computer and uses your smartphone’s GPS and data plan to upgrade your car's capabilities. Special offer for Gadgets listeners: $80 with free shipping! Read the rest



Download audio: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/boingboing/iBag/~5/TkThw7kx8R0/164913031-boing-boing-gadgets014.mp3
Read the whole story
Share this story
Delete

Kelvin 23

1 Share

I travel a lot, and I don’t always check a bag, which means the vast majority of multi-tools are verboten due to the knife/saw/other bladed instrument that they all seem to have.

The Kelvin 23 is different. It’s a 23-in-1 tool that’s compact and lightweight. I bought it on a splurge several years ago, and I’ve been happy ever since.

At around $25, it includes everything you need while you’re out and about:

  • A screwdriver, with 16 screw bits, Hex, Flat, Phillips, Square. It also locks at 90 degrees to give you more leverage when you need it and is magnetized to help keep screws in place
  • A hammer – while the ‘hammer’ part is nothing more than a flat round part on one end of the tool, it works surprisingly well for basic hanging needs
  • 6 foot tape measure
  • LED light
  • A level – being that the tool is only 5.25″ long,it’s not the most accurate level, but it does work in a pinch!

While it doesn’t have a pair of pliers included, other than that it covers about 90% of the stuff I do at home or need when I’m away. I’ve used it to hang pictures, put together Ikea furniture, tighten squeaky hotel beds, hammer things back into place and more.

I don’t end up using it often, but I do feel better just knowing I have some kind of multi-tool with me when I’m traveling!

-- Jeremy Pavleck

Kelvin 23 Multitool
$25

Available from Amazon

Read the whole story
Share this story
Delete

Khan Academy

2 Shares

Is there anyone who doesn’t know about Khan Academy, the free online school? A favorite of the digiterati, this website was founded by Sal Khan who started out by making video tutorials on how to learn algebra. He captured his instructional doodles on a black screen (rather than focus on his talking face) and these short intense classes were amazingly effective. Our son used them for high-school math summer school. Students love them because they can go their own pace, and back up when needed. Sal Khan branched out to cover almost every other school topic, from history to economics, in over 4,000 videos. I’ve searched for, and attended, specific lessons in his Chemistry set in order to brush up on a forgotten point. While his math and SAT prep ones are still the best, all his courses are free, and he still teaches better than the average teacher.


Overview of KhanAcademy.org: An overview of the different ways to use Khan Academy


-- KK

Khan Academy
Free

Read the whole story
Share this story
Delete

Apocalyspork

1 Share

A spork may be a simple thing, but this one is handmade in the U.S. from medical-grade titanium that is recycled from military and aerospace scrap. It’s lightweight and virtually indestructible. I’ve had it for two years and suspect that it will not only outlast me, but my children as well.

Why titanium? It’s lighter, but stronger than steel. Titanium is also rustproof, hypoallergenic, and bacteria-resistant.

The handle also contains a bottle opener, an oxygen bottle key, a 0.325 inch hex nut key, and a 0.25 inch hex nut key.

-- David Stewart

Full-Size Apocalyspork
$44

Manufactured by American Kami

Read the whole story
Share this story
Delete

SOG Multitool

1 Share

I’ve had my SOG multitool (with power-assist, in black) for probably 10 years. It’s geared, so the pliers and wire cutter add nearly double the gripping power. I’ve used the saw for cutting drywall, the knife for anything needing a sharp sturdy knife, and every other tool at one time or another. It is truly durable, comes in an industrial leather belt pouch and if I had to pick just one thing to take with me into any situation, it’d be this.

<object width=”475″ height=”267″><param name=”movie” value=”//www.youtube.com/v/MkT4ZHve3-c?version=3&amp;hl=en_US”></param><param name=”allowFullScreen” value=”true”></param><param name=”allowscriptaccess” value=”always”></param><embed src=”//www.youtube.com/v/MkT4ZHve3-c?version=3&amp;hl=en_US” type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” width=”475″ height=”267″ allowscriptaccess=”always” allowfullscreen=”true”></embed></object>

-- Rob Campbell

SOG PowerAssist Multi-Tool
$68

Available from Amazon

Read the whole story
Share this story
Delete
Next Page of Stories