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  1. Millions of Amazon Echo 1st generation and Amazon Kindle 8th generation are susceptible to an old WiFi vulnerability called KRACK that allows an attacker to perform a man in the middle attack against a WPA2 protected network. KRACK, or Key Reinstallation Attack, is a vulnerability in the 4-way handshake of the WPA2 protocol that was disclosed in October 2017 by security researchers Mathy Vanhoef and Frank Piessens. Using this attack, bad actors can decrypt packets sent by clients in order to steal sensitive information that is sent over plain text. While the WPA2 wireless connection of this network has been compromised by this attack, it is important to note that any encrypted traffic sent over the wireless network will still be protected from snooping. In order to fix these vulnerabilities, hardware manufacturers needed to release new firmware for the affected devices. Older Amazon devices are affected In a report by the ESET Smart Home Research Team, the researchers have discovered that Amazon Echo 1st generation and Amazon Kindle 8th generation devices were still affected by the KRACK vulnerability. When performing tests against the older Echo and Kindle devices, ESET discovered that the devices were vulnerable to the KRACK four-way handshake CVE-2017-13077 and CVE-2017-13078 vulnerabilities. "The Echo 1st generation and Amazon Kindle 8th generation devices were found to be vulnerable to two KRACK vulnerabilities", ESET researchers stated in their report. "Using Vanhoef’s scripts, we were able to replicate the reinstallation of the pairwise encryption key (PTK-TK) in the four-way handshake (CVE-2017-13077) and reinstallation of the group key (GTK) in the four-way handshake (CVE-2017-13078)." Reinstallation of keys using CVE-2017-13077 on Amazon Echo According to ESET these vulnerabilities could allow an attacker to: replay old packets to execute a DoS attack, disrupt network communication or replay attack decrypt any data or information transmited by the victim depending on the network configuration: forge data packets, cause the device to dismiss packets or even inject new packets intercept sensitive information such as passwords or session cookies The researchers also discovered that the Amazon Home Assistant was affected by an unrelated vulnerability that could allow an attacker to steal packets or perform a DoS attack. Security update released for affected Amazon devices ESET responsibly disclosed these bugs to Amazon on October 23rd, 2018 and was told that Amazon would look into the issues. On January 8th, 2019, Amazon stated that they could replicate the bugs and had prepared patches that would be pushed out to affected devices in the coming weeks. This patch would come in the form of a new wpa_supplicant, which is a small program that controls the wireless protocols on the device. "To patch CVE-2017-13077 and CVE-2017-13078 vulnerabilities in several million Echo 1st generation and Amazon Kindle 8th generation devices, Amazon issued and distributed a new version of the wpa_supplicant – a software application on the client device responsible for correct authentication to the Wi-Fi network." Most users should have this update already installed for quite some time, but it is strongly advised that all users go into their Echo and Kindle settings and make sure they are using the latest firmware. Source
  2. Although Surface Pro 7 was introduced a couple of weeks ago, still the product range has already grabbed eyeballs of the target audience. Some of the major changes bundled in this Surface Pro lineup include important performance improvements. However, many Surface fans who purchased the Surface Pro 7 and Surface Lap 3 devices reported many issues. Amongst all other problems, WiFi issues are the ones that affected a large number of users. The forum reports [1, 2, 3, 4, 5 ] suggest that their device is either not identifying the internet or it is remarkably slow as soon as the device is resumed from sleep. Microsoft launched Surface Laptop 3 and Surface Pro 7 with an Intel processor instead of the Marvel version. Apparently, the WiFi bug is introduced by the newly added AX201 Wi-Fi chip. Some furious people have already started to claim a refund. One of the Surface Pro 7 users reported the WiFi bug on the Microsoft Community forum: “Have recently purchased a new Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 and have noticed that once the laptop is put to sleep, upon using it again the wifi is really slow. I have also read that other are experiencing the same issues and wanted to know if there is a way to fix this or whether there will be a software update to address this issue.“ Considering the impact of this problem, Microsoft needs to release an emergency update to fix the WiFi bug. However, it seems like Microsoft has officially decided to remain tight-lipped on this matter. Don’t Update Your WiFi Drivers Notably, the new Surface devices come preinstalled with customized drivers. A Redditor blamed the Intel AX201 adapter to be responsible for the Surface Pro 7 slow WiFi bug after resuming from sleep mode. “The new Intel AX201 adapter has 2×2 MIMO, basically double the antennas for double the speed (if your router supports it). Now in standby Dynamic SMPS disables one antenna and the other antenna goes to a low power state. However the bug is that after waking up the device from standby, the second antenna is not activated and the other antenna remains in the low power state resulting in severely reduced speeds, higher latency.“ Microsoft MVP Barb Bowman advised users should not install the “generic Intel AX201 drivers” because they are apparently causing other serious problems. An attempt to update the drivers might break your machine and you will no longer be able to restore it. Solution At the time of writing this article, many Reddit users came up with a temporary solution to resolve the slow WiFi problem. One of the easiest ways to avoid the problem is hibernating your device instead of using the standby mode. Alternatively, you can follow the below-mentioned steps to change the MIMO settings. Navigate to the Start menu, right-click on it and select Device Manager > Network adapters. Right-click Intel AX201, select Properties > Advanced > MIMO power save mode. Click No SMPS from the drop-down menu available on the right. Now go to the following path: Windows 10 > Settings > System > Power & Sleep. Choose When my PC is asleep and on battery power disconnect from network and click Always when prompted. Other Issues Still Remain Unfixed It is worth mentioning that it is not a permanent solution but it does reduce the frequency of the bug. The list of issues seems to be a long one. Some other people claimed that the system is has stopped identifying networks. Unfortunately, a network rest does not resolve the problem. Another user confirmed that Night Light feature is not working during the scheduled time. Microsoft needs to release a patch as soon as possible to avoid a large number of refund claims. Source: New Microsoft Surface Lineup Reportedly Hit By Serious Wi-Fi Problems, Here’s A Workaround (via Appuals)
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