The most common security protocol for WiFi networks is the WPA2 encryption protocol, used by most routers and devices today. Researchers have discovered a flaw in the said protocol, which might allow hackers to intercept the information you send over WiFi networks. This is called “Krack Attacks”, and Android users might be especially vulnerable.

This attack method was discovered by KU Leuven University’s Mathy Vanhoef and Frank Piessens, and it involves a method they call as “Key Reinstallation Attacks” or Krack Attacks for short. This is how it works – hackers will target a vulnerable WPA2 network, make a copy of the whole network and impersonate the MAC address of the router, and then change the WiFi channel. This fake network now acts as a “man in the middle” for the hackers so that when devices attempt to connect to the original network, it can be forced to connect to the malicious one.

This attack can be used to steal just about any data sent over the network, such as credit card numbers, passwords, photos and other sensitive information. The researchers say that attacks against devices that run Linux and Android 6.0 (and above) are “particularly devastating”, because thanks to a bug in the WPA2 protocol, Android devices don’t force the client to demand a unique encryption key each time. This allows hackers using Krack Attacks to steal information sent over the network by Android devices.

The researchers said that a firmware change to the router or to the Android device should do the trick, forcing devices to require a dedicated certificate for each handshake, instead of relying on the one already generated.

SOURCE: Krack Attacks