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Phones powered by Unisoc SoCs vulnerable to remote hacker attacks: Checkpoint Research

Mobile phones powered by Unisoc chips have been found to be vulnerable to problems that allow attackers to remotely block communication. Cybersecurity analysis firm Checkpoint Research on Thursday identified a vulnerability affecting communication on a Unisock modem. The problem is with the modem firmware and, according to the company, affects 4G and 5G Unisoc chipsets. UNISOC recognized the vulnerability and gave it a 9.4 out of 10 score, which was considered critical in nature.

Checkpoint Research states in itself Report Critical vulnerability, tracked as CVE-2022-20210, was detected while scanning non-access stratum (NAS) message handlers. Using a malformed packet can cause a hacker or military unit to interrupt the device’s radio communication.

A researcher at Checkpoint Research was able to To locate Unisoc T700 chip-based Motorola Moto G20 vulnerable with Android January 2022 security patch. However, the problem is not limited to a specific Unisoc SoC model or specific phone.

“We found vulnerabilities in the Unisock modem built into 11 percent of smartphones,” said Slava McCarthy, an attorney at Reverse Engineering and Security Research in Checkpoint Software. “The attacker may have sent a malformed packet that resets the modem using the radio station, which deprives the user of the opportunity for communication. The attacker may block cellular communication.”

McCaviev added that a vulnerability was found in the Unisock modem firmware and not in the Android operating system.

Checkpoint Research revealed its results to Unisock in May. A chipmaker based in Shanghai has identified the vulnerability and issued a patch after the revelation.

However, the solution has not yet reached the consumers. Google has announced that it will publish a patch given in the upcoming Android Security Bulletin, the research firm said.

Checkpoint Research has asked users to always update their mobile phones to the latest software version available.

Unisoc, formerly known as Spreadtrum, has been a major player in the smartphone chipmaker market for the past few months.

According to a Recent report According to market research firm Counterpoint, Unisock’s share rose to 47% in the first quarter of the year from 20% in the same quarter last year. It also gave a tough fight to MediaTek, which is struggling with supply restrictions for 4G chips.

Companies including Samsung, Motorola and Realme are using Unisoc SoCs in their budget phones.


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