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The Samsung Galaxy S5, Apple iPhone 5s and Google Nexus 5 were amongst handsets to be successfully hacked during the Mobile Pwn2Own hacking competition, reports Forbes.
The event is an annual competition which offers cash prizes to those that can reveal security weaknesses in handsets. Sponsored by BlackBerry and Google Android, the event offered a total prize pool of $425,000 to those who could hack the handsets, and prizes were offered pretty quickly as just one day into the two-day event, the iPhone 5s, Samsung Galaxy S5, Nexus 5 and Amazon Fire Phone were all successfully hacked.
International Business Times has some more details on the hacks of each handset. It reports that the iPhone 5s fell to “a combination of two vulnerabilities” which allowed the attackers to to hack it via the Safari browser, achieving a ‘full sandbox escape.’ The Samsung Galaxy S5 and Google Nexus 5, on the other hand, both fell foul to exploits using the NFC chip – this wasn’t an option in the iPhone 5s, which does not have one, though the recently released iPhone 6 has introduced the chip for the first time.
The Amazon Fire Phone, which runs a customized version of Android, fell “using a combination of three separate vulnerabilities”.
Bad news for iOS and Android phones then, but what of Windows Phone? Well, according to Ars Technica, a single hacker attempted to take on the Lumia 1520, but was rebuffed. The hacker was apparently “able to exfiltrate the cookie database”, but “unable to gain full control of the system.”
HP, that runs the event as part of its Zero Day Initiative, will release more detail on the nature of the hacks once the companies have had time to patch the vulnerabilities.
Bloomua / Shutterstock.com
Author Alan Martin, ESET