SATAn Turns Hard Drive Cable Into Antenna To Defeat Air-Gapped Security


It looks like [Mordechai Guri]’s lab at Ben-Gurion University is the location exactly where air-gapped pcs go to die, or at minimum to give up their insider secrets. And this hack employing a computer’s SATA cable as an antenna to exfiltrate knowledge is another illustration of just how several side-channel attacks the common Computer can make available.

The exploit, deliciously specified “SATAn,” relies on the simple fact that the SATA 3. interface made use of in several desktops has a bandwidth of 6. Gb/s, indicating that manipulating the computer’s IO would make it probable to transmit information from an air-gapped machine at all over 6 GHz. It’s a intricate exploit, of class, and entails positioning a transmitting software on the target equipment making use of the typical techniques, such as phishing or zero-working day exploits. After in put, the transmitting software employs a combination of go through and generate operations on the SATA disk to crank out RF alerts that encode the details to be exfiltrated, with the knowledge strains inside of the SATA cable acting as antennae.

SATAn is revealed in action in the movie below. It normally takes a when to transmit just a handful of bytes of knowledge, and the variety is significantly less than a meter, but that could be more than enough for the exploit to realize success. The examination set up uses an SDR — specifically, an ADALM PLUTO — and a laptop computer, but you can conveniently visualize a a lot smaller sized package being crafted for a stealthy stroll-by design and style attack. [Mordechai] also features a prospective countermeasure for SATAn, which in essence thrashes the hard travel to make RF sound to mask any produced alerts.

While likely confined in its simple apps, SATAn is an interesting facet-channel assault to incorporate to [Dr. Guri]’s listing of exploits. From optical exfiltration making use of safety cameras to turning ability materials into speakers, the vulnerabilities just maintain piling up.

Many thanks to [chuckt] for the suggestion.

[via Bleeping Computer]



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Ellen C. McGowan

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