RAMpage: One More Vulnerability Discovered

vulnerability named ‘RAMpage’

With technology and popularity of digital devices such as smartphones, tablets and laptops, we certainly have plenty of room to save our information. Our very own smartphone holds great value as it could contain vital information such as personal and financial details along with photos and videos. But do you think that the device you are holding, be it mobile phone, laptop or other are safe and secure?

Well, if you think so, you might be living in some other world. For now, nobody is safe, and if given a statement then in one line, ‘We are all living in a hacked World”.

So, talking about hacked world, recently, a team of university researchers found out that since the year 2012 almost all of the Android devices manufactured and used are vulnerable to a newly found vulnerability named ‘RAMpage’.

But, what exactly is this vulnerability? Well, before moving further we need to know all about it.

What is RAMpage and How Does It Work?

According to researchers RAMpage is an update to Rowhammer attack.

Rowhammer is a hardware virus that infects your system. This happens when an active actor sends innumerous read and write requests to the same memory cells. By this, an electric field is created via which the data present in nearby memory cells can be altered and manipulated.

Back in 2012, when Android ICS was released, Google also launched a new Android kernel named ION, which is used for memory allocation for apps and services. So, basically RAMpage attacks ION to create a global threat on all the Android devices.

As we know, each memory cell represents 1-bit data, this data can be extracted with the use of RAMpage attack.

On this the team of university researchers who discovered this vulnerability said,

“RAMpage breaks the most fundamental isolation between user applications and the operating system,” researchers said. “While apps are typically not permitted to read data from other apps, a malicious program can craft a RAMpage exploit to get administrative control and get hold of secrets stored in the device.”

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They also added,

“This might include your passwords stored in a password manager or browser, your personal photos, emails, instant messages and even business-critical documents”.

Can it Only Affect Android Devices?

Well, researchers think that this is not only limited to Android. RAMpage can also impact other devices as well that includes, Apple devices, personal computers, or even servers.

As we know that this is not the first time that vulnerabilities like these were discovered. Earlier, the identical variant named Drammer was discovered in 2016, leaving tons of Android devices infected. This means that every Android phone from 2012 is open to this vulnerability. So for this, researchers have created their own solution that is GuardION. It is a tool to protect the ION system from RAMpage vulnerability and other attacks.

This was all guys! It’s always better to stay safe and take necessary precautions to help yourself.

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