alanwilliamson

Drive by Bluetooth'ing - or blue jacking!

On our way the other night, we stopped into McDonalds for a bite to eat.  We had just picked up a new puppy, so the option of staying in the car while munching all our e-numbers was quite appealing.  I started playing with my TomTom unit , noticing it had a bluetooth interface to it.  It would use a bluetooth device to hook itself up to the internet for various weather and traffic reports.  Very cool I thought.  Always nice to see something you already own get a new lease of life for nothing.

 Using my BlackBerry I attempted to pair the devices.  This wasn't as easy as I thought, since my BlackBerry wasn't Bluetooth enabled out of the box; I had to turn it on.  Not a big deal you may think, but there is a small point to be had there.  Upon the discovering of one another, a number of devices popped up on the TomTom as being enabled for pairing with.  These were not my devices; but the devices of fellow McDonald car park munchers!!

At first I thought this was just the bluetooth self discovery aspect, thinking I couldn't actually connect to any of them.  Well I was wrong.  There were a number of what I can only assume to teenagers phones (the name of their device gave that away) that I attempted to connect to.  No problems whatsoever, with some of them offering the Internet Gateway service for me!

This all took me by surprise for a number of reasons.  First of all, I didn't realise bluetooth was quite this insecure.  Secondly, I bet most of them didn't even know their Bluetooth self-discovery was enabled, maybe it was enabled by default, but either way, they are sending out "please use me" messages.  I've turned off my Bluetooth discovery feature on my BlackBerry, so others may not use me to piggy-back onto the internet.

So if you want to meet new friends, or just have some free internet, turn on your bluetooth and see who is around and how open their phone is! 

 


 

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