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Warning: BrailleNote Apex Offers Read/Write FTP And Telnet Access To All Comers
From: Sabahattin Gucukoglu <mail () sabahattin-gucukoglu com>
Date: Fri, 1 Oct 2010 22:31:58 +0100

BrailleNote Apex offers telnet and FTP access on the standard ports, with read/write privilege on the entire file 
system, to all comers.  No authentication is required.  BrailleNote is unsafe on any network whose devices you are not 
in full charge of, and which (by NAT or firewall) does not protect BrailleNote from the Internet.

I am happy and sad.  In a chance port scan of my entire network looking for interesting services and protocols that 
were not accounted for by visible configuration options in all my devices, I found this disaster staring me in the face 
on the least likely candidate of them all.  On the one hand, now I don't need ActiveStink in order to access my files, 
over the network, from my Mac.  I want these services running, for sure (maybe just FTP) but dammit, authentication 
first!  On the other hand, there is no doubt my trust in HumanWare is badly dented, as I was clearly optimistic that 
they would, and did, do the right thing and secure the device firmware before shipping it.  Anonymous FTP and telnet 
are obvious, easily found and effectively exploited.  If it isn't configurable, it shouldn't be enabled.  I am quite 
sure this was the case before now.  The most likely explanation is a build with a test configuration and services for 
development still in use on the newest model; the 
 USB vendor string is further evidence of this.  Note to self: that popular expression about assumptions turns out to 
be true.

KeySoft version 9.0.2 build 756, Windows CE 6.0, with telnet and FTP services.

While we await an update that either disables the services or allows the user to specify the authentication 
credentials, do not use your BrailleNote Apex on any untrusted network, or if you are network administrator, 
temporarily prohibit these devices from connecting to your networks.  If "Bad guys" are on your network, the 
BrailleNote Apex is, alas, easy meat.

Cheers,
Sabahattin

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