Huawei Router Vulnerability Exposed at Hack in the Box

This is the last day of the “Hack In the Box” (HITB) security conference, being held at Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.  With this year’s conference, HITB completed ten years, since it started back in 2003. Felix “FX” Lindner, A security researcher at the HITB event this year has identified a simple yet alarming Huawei router vulnerability. It is alarming, because according to the researcher, one does not need a backdoor program to get access to the device in the first place, and it affects all Huawei devices allowing for easy control over entire networks.

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The code running on Huawei routers is archaic and is rigged with security holes. Huawei being the largest producer of telecom equipment in the world, it should take care to resolve this problem if it wants to retain its customers. Recently, Huawei is in news often, because of an ongoing investigation on Huawei and ZTE, two prominent network operators. ZDNet writes,

Lindner made headlines after DefCon in July when he presented a talk showing Chinese Huawei routers to be so riddled with security holes that they were fairly trivial – potentially ideal – for attackers to reconfigure, intercept, monitor and alter all traffic that runs through them.

Clearly, Huawei is well aware of the problem, since it was notified about the same back in July, when Lindner covered the same topic at DefCon. Huawei is having a tough time with all the bad press. However, it needs to make up and take care of this mess, before it starts World War III.

Huawei Excluded from Canadian Government Network Plan After Bad Press

Over the last few months, Chinese telecom equipment manufacturers like Huawei and ZTE have been the subjects of attack in US Congressional Reports. According to the reports, these companies have grown notorious for suspicious behavior of their equipment, as reported by both employees and customers. The Congressional report urges American companies to stop doing business with Huawei and ZTE, and urges network providers to seek other vendors. Although there are no solid proofs being released here, the Congressional Reports probably suggest possibilities of spying on communication and threats to vital equipment.

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Following the Huawei ban from the US Government, and the Australian Government, recently, the Canadian Government has taken a stern step to exclude Huawei from a national networking project. The Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s spokesman, explained it as,

Canada has invoked a national security exception to let it discriminate, without violating international trade obligations, against companies deemed as too risky to be involved in putting together the network for carrying government phone calls, emails and data center services.

Huawei is the world’s largest manufacturer of telecom equipment, and ZTE is the fifth largest. Both of them have rejected any affiliation with the Chinese Government and the Chinese Government has also rejected these Congressional Report claims as being “groundless accusations”. A sweet cyber-warfare is brewing here, and China is already notorious for its cyber-warfare policy. This entire incident will leave a bad taste in the mouth Huawei customers worldwide which will eventually be bad for their business.

U.S. Intelligence Report Suggests Cutting Ties with Huawei and ZTE

A U.S. House of Representatives intelligence report suggests the U.S. should cut off relations with two of China’s top telecom manufacturers Huwaei and ZTE. It particularly states that neither company should be allowed to merge with any U.S. based telecom company. The recommendation comes after nearly a year long investigation into corporate practices of the Chinese based companies amid concerns of espionage and illegal activity.
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Congressman Mike Rogers of Michigan, who is also the chairman of the U.S. House Intelligence Committee, laid out the details accusing Huawei and ZTE of being uncooperative and not forthcoming with requested documentation. According to the report, the investigation into these companies began in February 2011 when Huawei “published an open letter to the U.S. Government denying security concerns with the company or its equipment, and requesting a full investigation into its corporate operations.” By November 2011, the U.S. House acted on that request and began to investigate potential security risks posed by doing business with the Chinese companies. There is growing concern that the Chinese are interested in accessing U.S. infrastructure for the purpose of espionage. Below is a quote from the Executive Summary section of the report that lays out many of the concerns:

Prior to initiating the formal investigation, the Committee performed a preliminary review of the issue, which confirmed significant gaps in available information about the Chinese telecommunications sector, the histories and operations of specific companies operating in the United States, and those companies’ potential ties to the Chinese state. Most importantly, that preliminary review highlighted the potential security threat posed by Chinese telecommunications companies with potential ties to the Chinese government or military. In particular, to the extent these companies are influenced by the state, or provide Chinese intelligence services access to telecommunication networks, the opportunity exists for further economic and foreign espionage by a foreign nation-state already known to be a major perpetrator of cyber espionage.

Huawei’s vice-president, William Plummer, said the latest accusations were “dangerous political distractions”. According to a BBC article, Huawei was started by a former member of the People’s Liberation Army. It also reported that U.S. based Cisco Systems cut ties with ZTE after it allegedly sold U.S. equipment to the Iranians which is a clear breach of U.S. sanctions.

The report outlined several recommendations from not allowing any ZTE or Huawei systems to be used in any government facility to warning U.S. businesses about the unfair businesses practices of these companies, particularly intellectual property. All of this comes about at a time when relations with China are already strained due to the Presidential election. Many Americans feel the government needs to do more about China’s unfair trade practices.

For more information and to see the full report, visit http://intelligence.house.gov/.

Huawei Launches The Android Powered Ascend G600 Smartphone

Huawei recently introduced a new member in its Ascend family of smartphones, the Huawei Ascend G600. This handset packs a 4.5 inch display as well as a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor. It runs on the Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) Operating System and the device is likely to get the latest Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) update in the coming weeks. According to the manufacturer, the Huawei Ascend G600 can be fully charged in just four hours, powered on in five seconds and provides more than 15 days of standby time.

Shao Yang, Chief Marketing Officer, Huawei Device, said:
“We are very excited to introduce the new Huawei Ascend G600, which gives more functionality and power for people who expect more from their technology. Building on the success of the Ascend range of smartphones, the Huawei Ascend G600 is the latest in our range of flagship products that make exceptional product experiences accessible for more people globally.”

Huawei Ascend G600 features a 4.5 inch LCD IPS qHD display, sporting a resolution of 960 x 540 pixels, 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) OS, Huawei Emotion UI, 8 megapixel BSI auto-focus camera, VGA front-facing camera for video chat, double speakers with DTS surround sound and more.

It also comes with the usual 3.5 mm headset jack, Wi-Fi 801.11 b/g/n, 3G Connectivity, NFC (Near Field Communication) Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth, DLNA, 768MB RAM, 4 GB internal memory, Micro SD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, A-GPS, MicroUSB 2.0, Google Play Store, up to 15 days of stand-by time and a 1930mAh Li-Polymer battery.

The Huawei Ascend G600 will be available in black and white colors. This handset will go on sale from next month in select markets. The price of this device has not been announced yet.

Huawei Ascend G300 And Ascend Y200 Launched In India

Huawei recently launched two new mid-range smartphones in India, the Huawei Ascend G300 and Ascend Y200. These handsets runs on the old Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System. Huawei Ascend G300 is the first smartphone in the “Ascend G” series, targeted at the folks looking for stylish and feature rich multimedia smartphones. On the other hand, Huawei Ascend Y200 is the first smartphone in the “Ascend Y” series, specially designed for young consumers. Ascend G300 takes less than 120 minutes to get fully charged, while the Ascend Y200 takes only 90 minutes to get fully charged with a high power charger.

Mr. Victor Shan, President, Huawei Devices India said:
“We are extremely delighted to launch Ascend smartphone series in Indian market. Each Huawei Ascend product is an innovative flagship model developed to meet the needs of specific consumers with Ascend D (diamond), Ascend P (platinum), Ascend G (gold), and Ascend Y (youth) categories. The Ascend G300 and Y200 are easy-to-use Smart phones that provide exceptional power, performance and style for the discerning consumers. We are confident that with their impressive specs and accessible price, the Ascend series will become popular choice among consumers across the country.”

Huawei Ascend G300:

Huawei Ascend G300 features a 4 inch IPS display, sporting a resolution of 480 x 800 pixels, 1 GHz Qualcomm MSM7227A Snapdragon processor, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System, 5 megapixel auto-focus camera with LED flash, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 3.5 mm headset jack, Stereo FM radio with RDS, 512 MB RAM, 4 GB internal memory, Micro SD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, Wi-Fi Direct, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP, microUSB 2.0, GPS with A-GPS, up to 320 hrs of stand-by time, up to 6 hrs of talk time and a 1500 mAh battery.

Huawei Ascend Y200:

Huawei Ascend Y200 features a 3.5 inch IPS display, sporting a resolution of 320 x 480 pixels, 800 MHz Qualcomm MSM7225A Snapdragon processor, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System, 3.2 megapixel rear-facing camera, Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP, microUSB 2.0, 3.5 mm headset jack, Stereo FM radio with RDS, 256 MB RAM, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 3G Connectivity, 512 MB internal memory, Micro SD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, Wi-Fi hotspot, GPS with A-GPS, up to 220 hrs of stand-by time, up to 4 hrs of talk time and a 1250 mAh battery.

These devices allows you to access more than 600,000 apps and games from the Google Play Store. Huawei Ascend G300 and Ascend Y200 comes with a price-tag of Rs.13,490 (approx. $240) and Rs.8,190 (approx. $150) respectively.

T-Mobile Announces The myTouch And myTouch Q Smartphones

We have already seen the leaked pics of T-Mobile’s upcoming smartphones. Today, the wireless carrier finally announced two new smartphones, the myTouch and myTouch Q. The 2011 variant of these handsets were manufactured by LG. However, the new 2012 variant is made by none other than popular Chinese smartphone manufacturer Huawei. These specs of both the handsets are almost similar, except slide-out QWERTY keyboard attached to the myTouch Q smartphone. Google has already unveiled the latest Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean) OS. Sadly, myTouch and myTouch Q will be shipped with the out-dated version of Android OS. Yes, we are talking about the Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System.

Brad Duea, senior vice president of product management, T-Mobile USA, said:
“T-Mobile is committed to delivering a strong and diverse portfolio of 4G handsets that runs on our fast and dependable 4G network, including smartphones that enable people to get amazing 4G experiences at a great value. The value and ease of use that the myTouch devices deliver, paired with our worry-free rate plans, means it is easier than ever for customers to get everything they want in a smartphone without the expense for features they won’t use.”

T-Mobile myTouch features a 4 inch WVGA touchscreen display with Swype virtual keyboard, 800 x 480 pixels resolution, 1.4 GHz single-core processor, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) OS, 5 megapixel camera with auto-focus and LED flash, Wi-Fi 801.11 b/g/n, 4G Connectivity, 3.5 mm headset jack and much more. This handset will be available in black and dark red colors.

T-Mobile myTouch Q comes with a 4 inch touchscreen display, sporting a resolution of 800 x 480 pixels, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) OS, slide-out QWERTY keyboard, 1.4 GHz single-core processor, 5 megapixel auto-focus camera, VGA front-facing camera for video chat, Google Play Store, 4G Connectivity and so on. This device will be available in black and white colors.

The T-Mobile mYTouch and myTouch Q comes with the new Genius button 4.0, which allows the users to access the new Genius web search, featuring new voice-command capabilities such as direct search among multiple sources, direct app launch and the ability to make dinner reservations. These handsets will go on sale from August 8 in the US. T-Mobile my Touch and myTouch Q can be purchased for just $49.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate and a two-year service agreement.

Huawei Honor Launched In India For Rs.19,990

Back in September, Huawei announced the powerful Huawei Honor smartphone. It was the company’s most powerful Android smartphone until the launch of Huawei Ascend D at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2012. This handset was expected to release during the Q4 of 2011 in India. However, the launch of this device got delayed due to some unknown reasons.

After waiting for nearly 7 months, Huawei finally launched the powerful Huawei Honor smartphone in India. This handset runs on the Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System. However, the Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) update is on its way. Huawei Honor comes with an exclusive Huawei user interface with a dynamic weather widget. It is currently one of the most powerful Android smartphone in the sub-20k category.

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Huawei Honor features a 4 inch FWVGA capacitive touch screen display, 1.4 Ghz processor, Android 2.3.5 (Gingerbread) OS, Huawei user-interface, 8 megapixels auto focus camera, 2 megapixel front-facing camera for video calls, 3G HSPA+, WiFi 802.11b/g/n and more.

Other features include a 3.5 mm headset jack, Bluetooth 2.1 with A2DP, FM radio, Micro USB 2.0 port, 512 MB RAM, 4GB ROM, microSD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, Assisted GPS support, DLNA-certified, G-sensor, proximity sensor, light sensor, Google play Store and a 1900 mAh battery.

The Huawei Honor comes with a price-tag of just Rs.19,990 (approx $.390) in India. You can easily get this device at Reliance Digital, Croma and other multi brand outlets across India. To order this device from Flipkart, just head over to this page.

Huawei Ascend G 300 Unveiled, Yet Another Budget Droid

Huawei has always been one of the underdogs compared to Samsung, HTC and other biggies in the smartphone arena, but it put on a really good show at MWC 2012 with the new Huawei MediaPad 10, the Huawei Ascend D Quad and its new quad core CPU.

However, it also unveiled a few more devices at MWC 2012, which were overshadowed by its other high profile releases. One of them was the Huawei Ascend G 300, a new budget Android smartphone.

Huawei Ascend G 300 Specifications

The Huawei Ascend G 300 comes with a 4 inch WVGA display with a resolution of 800 x 480 pixels. It is powered by a 1 GHz processor, and offers a 5 MP camera. It will run Android 2.3 Gingerbread at launch, but will be upgradeable to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. It will presumably offer 512 MB of RAM.

While the specifications are unremarkable compared to most of other phones being showcased at MWC 2012, the Huawei Ascend G300’s killer feature is expected to be its price.

Huawei will be pricing it much lower than current smartphones with similar specifications. Huawei should launch more details about its exact specs soon. For now, here’s an image of the device, courtesy Engadget.

Huawei Ascend G 300

Huawei MediaPad 10 Revealed: Quad Core, HD Display, ICS & More

Huawei was one of the first companies to hold a press conference at MWC 2012 today. While the announcements focused primarily on its new Android superphone, the Huawei Ascend D Quad, Huawei also revealed some details about a new tablet – the Huawei MediaPad 10.

Huawei MediaPad 10

Unlike Huawei’s previous tablet offerings, The Huawei MediaPad is supposed to be a high end Android tablet with some seriously good hardware powering it. It will offer an HD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels, an 8 MP camera and will be powered by Huawei’s new K3V2 processor, which was launched at the event too. The new K3V2 is a quad core processor which is clocked at 1.2 or 1.5 Ghz.

Huawei MediaPad 10

Besides 4 A9 processor cores, it also packs in 16 GPU cores, which makes it one of the most powerful mobile processors to date. According to Huawei, it offers 2X the graphics performance, and is almost 50% faster in CPU tasks than its competitors, while using 30% less power. The same chip will be powering the Huawei Ascend D Quad too.

Anyway, the MediaPad 10 will run Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, and sport an aluminum unibody design. It will be launched in Q2 2012. The pricing details haven’t been announced yet.

Check out our complete coverage of MWC 2012 – MWC 2012 @ Techie Buzz

Images courtesy Engadget

Huawei Ascend D Quad and quad XL Announced; Quad-Core CPU, 8MP Camera and More!

Huawei has just announced its first quad-core smartphone, the Ascend D. The quad-core processor inside the phone is made by Huawei themselves, and is clocked at 1.5GHz. Huawei states that SoC has the ”lowest chip temperature” that helps in reducing the overall power consumption. The company is also dubbing the phone to be the fastest quad-core smartphone, and even compared the phone’s performance to that of the Galaxy Nexus and the Transformer Prime. This 8.9mm handset also has a 4.5-inch LCD screen with a 720p resolution, giving it a density of 330ppi.According to Huawei, the screen also performs excellently outdoors.

The quad-core on the phone is accompanied by a 16-core GPU as well, which according to Huawei is up to 2x times faster than the one on the Asus Transformer Prime and Galaxy Nexus. There is also a 1GB of 64-bit DDR3 RAM, 16GB of onboard storage and a microSD card slot.

The phone is not only about power, it comes with a decent camera and other useful features as well. The Ascend comes with a Dolby Digital 5.1 digital sound chip, and Audience earSmart voice technology which improves background noise filtration while on a call. At the back of the Ascend D is an 8MP backlit illuminated sensor, aided by an LED flash and a 1.3MP camera in the front. Like all other high-end handsets out there, the Ascend D is also capable of recording videos in Full HD (1080p) resolution.

The Ascend D comes with a 1800mAh battery, while the Ascend D XL will come with a whopping 2500mAh battery. Huawei’s proprietary power management technology also helps in improving the battery life of the handsets by up to 30%. Thankfully, the handsets will be running on Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich right out of the box!

While the Huawei Ascend D is genuinely a very nice effort from Huawei, the problem is its launch date. While Huawei did not mention anything specifically, reports suggest that the handset will launch sometime in Q3/Q4 of this year which is a bit too late.