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Vulnerability found in the Jura F90 coffee machine

1 February 2011, by — admin ()

The automatic Jura F90 coffee machine is a fairly expensive (around 1000 euros) device with lots of handy features. One of them enables it to connect to the Internet and allows its owner to control it remotely or update it with new coffee recipes.

By the way, we use an identical Jura coffee maker in our own office.

This advanced functionality is provided by a permanent Internet connection and special software installed on a computer.

Despite the unquestionable technical expertise of the device’s manufacturers, they didn’t manage to make it completely secure from the first attempt.

Australian security experts found a bug (a buffer overflow possibility) in the protocol the device uses to connect to the Internet. This bug makes it possible for an intruder to control both the coffee machine and its owner’s computer.

Protecting both from this hack is fairly easy: just configure the firewall to cut off connections to the coffee machine from untrusted IP addresses.

However, this creates an important precedent. There will be more and more Internet-enabled home devices on the market and it will give hackers tons of new opportunities. Nobody can guarantee that it won’t be possible (in the nearest future) to set a house on fire by remotely hacking a microwave oven and turning it to full power for a few hours.

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