The same team of cybersecurity researchers who discovered several severe vulnerabilities, collectively dubbed as Dragonblood, in the newly launched WPA3 WiFi security standard few months ago has now uncovered two more flaws that could allow attackers to hack WiFi passwords.
WPA, or WiFi Protected Access, is a WiFi security standard that has been designed to authenticate wireless devices using the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) protocol and intended to prevent hackers from eavesdropping on your wireless data.
The WiFi Protected Access III (WPA3) protocol was launched a year ago in an attempt to address technical shortcomings of the WPA2 protocol from the ground, which has long been considered to be insecure and found vulnerable to more severe KRACK attacks.
WPA3 relies on a more secure handshake, called SAE (Simultaneous Authentication of Equals), which is also known as Dragonfly, that aims to protect WiFi networks against offline dictionary attacks.
However, in less than a year, security researchers Mathy Vanhoef and Eyal Ronen found several weaknesses (Dragonblood) in the early implementation of WPA3, allowing an attacker to recover WiFi passwords by abusing timing or cache-based side-channel leaks.
Shortly after that disclosure, the WiFi Alliance, the non-profit organization which oversees the adoption of the WiFi standard, released patches to address the issues and created security recommendations to mitigate the initial Dragonblood attacks.
But it turns out that those security recommendations, which were created privately without collaborating with the researchers, are not enough to protect users against the Dragonblood attacks. Instead, it opens up two new side-channel attacks, which once again allows attackers to steal your WiFi password even if you are using the latest version of WiFi protocol.
New Side-Channel Attack Against WPA3 When Using Brainpool Curves
The first vulnerability, identified as CVE-2019-13377, is a timing-based side-channel attack against WPA3’s Dragonfly handshake when using Brainpool curves, which the WiFi Alliance recommended vendors to use as one of the security recommendations to add another layer of security.
“However, we found that using Brainpool curves introduces the second class of side-channel leaks in the Dragonfly handshake of WPA3,” the duo says in an updated advisory. “In other words, even if the advice of the WiFi Alliance is followed, implementations remain at risk of attacks.”
“The new side-channel leak is located in the password encoding algorithm of Dragonfly,” the researchers said, “We confirmed the new Brainpool leak in practice against the lastest Hostapd version, and were able to brute-force the password using the leaked information.”
Side-Channel Attack Against FreeRADIUS’ EAP-PWD Implementation
The second vulnerability, identified as CVE-2019-13456, is an information leak bug which resides the implementation of EAP-pwd (Extensible Authentication Protocol-Password) in FreeRADIUS—one of the most widely used open-source RADIUS server that companies utilizes as a central database to authenticate remote users.
images from Hacker News