A team of Belgian researchers has discovered the vulnerability, which allows attackers to eavesdrop Wi-Fi traffic passing between computers and access points, reports ArsTechnica. The exploit is known as KRACK, or Key Reinstallation Attacks. KRACK reportedly hijacks data being sent over the network by interrupting the third step in a four-way “handshake” that creates a key for encrypted data. The United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team recently contacted about 100 organizations ahead of the official announcement of the vulnerability. In the note they said:
US-CERT has become aware of several key management vulnerabilities in the 4-way handshake of the Wi-Fi Protected Access II (WPA2) security protocol. The impact of exploiting these vulnerabilities includes decryption, packet replay, TCP connection hijacking, HTTP content injection, and others. Note that as protocol-level issues, most or all correct implementations of the standard will be affected. The CERT/CC and the reporting researcher KU Leuven, will be publicly disclosing these vulnerabilities on 16 October 2017.
Needless to say, the WPA2 security protocol KRACK vulnerability could have far-reaching consequences for virtually everyone on the planet that uses a Wi-Fi connection. Right now, the good news is that there are no reported cases of hackers using the KRACK vulnerability to access a user’s data. Hopefully the WPA2 security protocol issue can quickly be addressed before any damage is done.