Berry sms spyware

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Share a link to this item with your friends and show them how they can personalize their BlackBerry smartphones. Embeds 0 No embeds. No notes for slide. Defeating spyware and forensics on the black berry draft 1. With more powerful mobiledevices, comes the proportionate growth of a myriad ofmalware. Traditionally, malware on the desktop platform hasbeen thought to be the work of individuals out to make theirmark on society and find their 15 minutes of notoriety. This isno longer the case. Malware is now used for anything fromorganized crime[1] to spying on cheating spouses.

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Other companiesmaintain a low-profile and sell similar products only to lawenforcement agencies. Whether it isemail, call records or GPS co-ordinates, data is collected andforwarded either at timed intervals or in real-time to acollection end-point.

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This paper discusses some of the keypoints of how to render this collected information useless. Tocounter malware, the traditional approach has been to developdetection and removal tools. This has limits in that onlyknown malware can be detected. An alternate approach is tofeed malware with an abundance of useless information or asignificantly reduced Signal-to-noise ratio.

This paper willdiscuss and provide examples of how such a technique can beimplemented on a BlackBerry handheld. Third party applications will run in asandboxed environment with many granular controls andpermissions that limit its functional capabilities. So why thendoes malware thrive on the platform? Because a user is stillrequired to administer these controls or permissions. Blaming a user is not going to solve the problem.

Educating the user is. Providing a user with free tools to detectspyware is another way to solve the problem. However, lettinga user continue to use his device with little to no interventionwhile at the same time confounding the people spying on himseems by far a more elegant solution. To properly understand how to achieve this, a goodunderstanding of how malware works is necessary. Next,knowledge of data repositories within the BlackBerry handheldneed to be identified and altered in a manner that will notinconvenience the end-user, but will significantly reduce theSignal-to-noise ratio for the data-collector.

These are all topicsthat will be covered in this paper. As a bonus, techniques onhampering a forensic investigation of the device will beincluded. There is theend-user who is the owner of the device and the informationcontained therein. Malware usually targets several information repositories onthe BlackBerry handheld and will go after specific types ofinformation.

Listenersalert the program when certain tasks take place. In therepositories listed in Table 1, every repository can have aListener added to run some code when an event is received. Due to a bug, either deliberate or inadvertent, the BlackBerryMessenger Listener does not work to its fullest capability andthus alternate methods are generally used by the malwarevendors. Rather than attempting to findand remove the malware, these techniques attack the source ofinformation that the malware is attempting to capture.

Thesetechniques will poison the information stores in a manner thatonly affects malware Fig. This will serve to reduce thequality of information presented to a data-collector.

The costto the end-user is minimized. Some of the techniquesdescribed may elicit unexpected behavior from malware which 2.

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For example, ifmalware is watching a folder and collecting objects that areintroduced to this folder, then conducting a POEPFlood attackwill initiate the process of adding collections of fake objects tothis watched folder in increasing order of magnitude. Thisresults in the malware collecting not only legitimate objects,but fake ones as well. Anattacker that hopes to spy on a device like this will have to siftthrough hundreds or thousands of pieces of inaccurate,irrelevant data. This achieves the goal of reducing the Signal-to-noise ratio.

This attack will be most usefulwhen it is not feasible to create an Artificial Data Store on theBlackBerry device. The two mainways to achieve this are 1 Write a routine where the handheldsends messages to itself 2 Use a third party messaginggateway to generate these messages.

The accompanying source code covers scenario 1. Scenario 2 is currently beyond the scope of this paper. Eitherway, an additional cost is incurred in either sending SMSmessages through the carrier or cost of messages on themessaging gateway. Alternatively, setting aS y s t e m L i s t e n e r 2 a n d t r i g g e r i n g a n a c t i o n o nusbConnectionStateChange is also a possibility.

The DDTS technique by itself often serves no purpose. The BlackBerry handheld has a built-in event loggingmechanism that system and third-party applications can writeto. The entire size of this logis 16Kb [ref to log size] and any third party application canwrite to this log using the EventLogger class on the device.


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To conduct this attack, a timed process that writes morethan 16Kb of data to the log is all that is required. Typically, BlackBerry based malware will operate bymaking use of the FolderListener [6] to watch specific mailfolders. By then acting on either a messagesAdded ormessagesRemoved method, specific trigger code can beexecuted.

Often, the Inbox and Outbox sent items arewatched for incoming and outgoing messages respectively. Inthis case, the messagesAdded function is what is of mostinterest. A typical example of a code snippet would looksomething like the one in Code Snippet 1 below:Code Snippet 1 - Trigger on messagesAdded For the sake of maintaining clarity, the code for theEvilSpywareModule has been omitted. Rendered graphically, this entire process maylook something like the diagram depicted in Figure 4. Then it is a matter of enumerating allthe folders and looking for the Inbox and Outbox beforehooking them using the FolderListener.

How to defeatBy using the same principle of hooking folders, it ispossible to defeat malware using the techniques discussedpreviously. The process summary maylook like this: 1 Setup a FolderListener on appropriate folders that requirepoisoning. Refer tothe accompanying source code for details on how to preparethis logic.

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For example,browse through the existing message store and randomlypick subject lines to use. One idea would be to fetch text from severaldifferent Internet sites. Another would be to collect randomwords from emails already in the folders. This can be optional. The key is to make the poisoned email flood look aslegitimate as the real emails.