The hack that OCU warns about is as dangerous as it is easy to avoid using these recommendations.

Bluetooth attacks pose a significant risk, mainly for unupdated devices.

There are scams and attacks that all users should be aware of. There is phishing, vishing, and also blunsnarfing. We’ll talk about the latter here. This is a very dangerous type of cyber attack, but fortunately we don’t have to worry about it if we take a few basic precautions.

This is a cool Anglo-Saxon name that repeats everything said to make it easier to remember, comes from two words: Bluetooth and catchwhich colloquially means copying without permission.

This method is not entirely new, but it is so common that the Organization of Consumers and Users (OCU) and the Bank of Spain have issued several statements warning about the risk.

What is it and how to protect yourself from bluesnarfing

What does it consist of? Bluesnarfing is a type of attack through which they can steal all types of data from our mobile phone through Bluetooth connection. It is not available to everyone; you need to be physically close to the mobile phone and comply with a number of conditions. But if they are carried out, the likelihood of access to our personal data is huge and could lead to theft all types of sensitive data such as passwords or even bank details.

The first condition is to activate Bluetooth. If no Bluetooth, no risk of bluesnarfing. Therefore, the first defense against this attack is to make sure that Bluetooth is only active when we are using it. If we don’t have a smartwatch or wireless headphones, ideally make sure to uncheck Bluetooth: from Android’s quick settings or from Control Center in iOS.

To protect ourselves from fraud, we need to not accept requests where we don’t know where they are coming from. In this case, you should not accept Bluetooth requests from third-party devices. If we don’t know what we’re talking about; reject.

The problem with bluesnarfing is that to carry out this type of attack We don’t have to accept permission. This scam method exploits the vulnerabilities of our mobile phone to access it via Bluetooth.

Bluesnarfing is a prime example of why it’s important to take care of your phone. updated with the latest security patches. Attackers usually look for victims with old mobile phones or devices that may be outdated. This means with uncorrected vulnerabilities that allow access to the mobile phone.

Usually, if we update a mobile phone to the latest versions of Android or iOS, we will fix most of the vulnerabilities as expected. And therefore the attempt to deceive will not work.

A major Bluetooth vulnerability was discovered in 2017. It’s Blueborne, and it’s affected over 5 billion devices. In practice, all devices are Bluetooth enabled. From Pixel to Galaxy, including iPhone, iPad and smartwatches. As well as laptops, tablets and even car audio systems. It hasn’t taken long for tech companies to update all devices to protect themselves, but if you have a device that’s old enough, be very careful about using it if you haven’t updated it all along.

The approximate range of Bluetooth is up to 10 meters, although theoretically with version 5.0 it can reach distances of up to 240 meters. This implies that for a blueprint attack to occur, the attacker must be relatively close. But let’s think about places such as public transport, waiting rooms or cafes. Any relatively densely populated space where we are going to spend a long time is at risk of a cyber attacker trying to pull off this scam. The solution is to stay up to date and turn off Bluetooth when not needed. Two simple recommendations that will help you avoid a good scare.

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