Bluetooth To Tackle The Snarf

By | November 9, 2004

I don’t have much of a clue about whether Bluetooth is really going to survive: Enough respected writers think it’s getting better for me to believe it could do, but if it does, it’s got to address the security issue. That seems to be happening.

I’ve prattled on here before about bluesnarfing — where data, and even calls, can be remotely hijacked from a cellephone by using Bluetooth — but I read that the Bluetooth Special Interest Group behind the standard are about to make it more secure, releasing an upgrade that Wireless IQ Info reports “will ‘improve overall security and dramatically improve power consumption'”:

Security will also be improved in the latest spec, says the SIG, and the additions will make Bluetooth a better fit for such applications as home security systems and industry automation applications, the organization says. Bluetooth had been hurt earlier this year with reports of security breaches involving the technology.

That’s good news. Mobile phone manufacturers were impressive in their obtuseness about the problem, so perhaps the SIG will do what is necessary to avoid further problems. A little bird tells me that the group is also talking to some of the experts, cited here in previous posts, who have done great work in exploring and exposing these vulnerabilities. I’d like nothing more than for Bluetooth to work, but I’m bored of writing stories saying it’s not yet ready for prime-time.

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