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New Bluetooth feature could create a huge security problem

New Bluetooth feature could create a huge security problem

When it comes to communication between gadgets, there are two major standards: Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Wi-Fi is good for creating networks of gadgets and connecting them to the Internet while Bluetooth is used for low-energy communication between two specific gadgets, such as a smartphone and a portable Bluetooth speaker.

Unfortunately, from Bluetooth's perspective, Wi-Fi is quickly taking over the entire market, especially with the rise of smart gadgets and smart home networks. Bluetooth has a plan to fight back, but it might end up doing more harm than good.

The Bluetooth special interest group is working on a way to let Bluetooth gadgets connect directly to routers and the Internet. So, if you have a Bluetooth-enabled sensor, you can keep tabs on it from anywhere. Or if you have a Bluetooth light, you can turn it on from anywhere.

Wi-Fi can already do this, but again Bluetooth uses less power, at least for now. However, in its rush to get this project off the ground, the Bluetooth SIG is ignoring something important: security.

As soon as you connect anything to the Internet, security suddenly become a lot more important. As it stands, to use Bluetooth, you have to have both gadgets in front of you and usually enter a pairing code to get them connected. Connecting gadgets over the Internet and making sure they are who they say they are is more complicated.

Even more worrying is this line from the documentation for the project: "networking security and server deployments are out of the scope of this exercise." While the group is probably just trying to get the basic technology down, it would be nice if security was a consideration from the beginning.

As you probably know, smart gadgets already have a poor reputation for security, and that's even with Wi-Fi's decent security as a starting point. The last thing we need is a flood of gadgets based on fundamentally insecure technology.

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Source: The Register
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