MediaTek powered smartphones are vulnerable to easy SMS hack

Security issues are getting more and more common these days, researchers and hackers are finding new vulnerabilities at a very fast rate. Here’s another one which discovered by a Blogger named Korben and this is possibly the strangest and the easiest of all possible hacks on the planet.

This one targets all smartphones running MediaTek processor, which makes it a widely spread vulnerability in all. There are numerous smartphones running on a MediaTek chipset, many of them are very popular specially in India. This list includes most of the phones from manufacturers like Micromax, Xolo, Karbonn, Alcatel, Lava and many others with mostly being Chinese phones. They are all vulnerable to this hack or say, attack.

What is the hack?

This hack is done with just a single SMS. Yes, just one SMS. So, what do we need to send? And what will happen? The answer is simple. You have to send a “=” (without quotes) and it will remotely reboot the phone as soon as the SMS is received. This is all it takes to remotely reboot some unlucky user’s phone. In MediaTek chipset language, this symbol apparently equals “shutdown and reboot”.


Can I make myself safe?

Unsurprisingly, the fix for this hack is easy too. If you are one of the unlucky people who are affected by this vulnerability, just change your default SMS app to another one. There are many apps available in the Play Store.

This vulnerability affects most MediaTek smartphones, not all. Make sure to confirm before you do anything. Anyways, taking precaution is better. So, changing your default SMS app is a good idea right now.

As of now, the flaw is limited to a simple reboot and hopefully, will not ending up being a bigger one.


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