What is Bluejacking?
Is the Bluetooth of your device secure? The first Bluetooth-enabled smartphone appeared on the market many years ago. Since then, multiple reports have said that this wireless technology is vulnerable to snooping. Bluejacking is a hacking method enabling hackers to send anonymous and unsolicited messages to Bluetooth mobiles.
What is Bluejacking?
Bluejacking is a technique allowing you to send unsolicited messages to a device supporting Bluetooth within its range. Usually, the message is flirtatious but can be malicious also. You can call it “bluejacking,” which scans one’s surroundings to discover Bluetooth-capable devices.
Bluetooth is a high-speed wireless technology but works best in short-range. It allows you to exchange data between desktops and computers. If your device’s Bluetooth is within 10 meters from the distance of a bluejacker and enabled, then it can happen to your device. Hackers can send unsolicited business cards, messages, or pictures.
How Do the People bluejack a Device?
Step 1: Your first task is to identify whether your device can do it or not. In this case, you have to navigate to the contact list and open it first. After that, you have to hit the “Options” button. If you see the menu with an option allowing you to send the contact via Bluetooth, you can bluehack.
Step 2: Now, you need to turn Bluetooth on your device. Hence, move to the “Options,” “Tools, or “Settings” menu of the mobile device.
Step 3: Next, you have to make a new contact, and then you have to insert a short message in the “Name” field.
Step 4: You should choose the new “contact” from the contact list. Then, your task is to send the contact via Bluetooth from the “Options” menu.
Step 5: Now, you need to wait a while till your device is compiling a list of the other Bluetooth devices in range.
Step 6: Choose any of the options available from the list. After that, tap on “Send” to bluehack the device.
Step 7: Now, you have to watch who has received the message nearby. Then, you have to send a follow-up message or select a new target to Bluejack.
Codes of Ethics While Bluejacking:
- Bluejackers are not allowed to ‘hack’ a device, and the reason is that it is an offense under the computer misuse act 1990 for unauthorized access to PCs.
- They can send only copyright-free images.
- The images should not be insulting or otherwise inappropriate.
- The bluejacker must stop messaging if the recipient doesn’t have any interest after two messages.
- They can send a maximum of ten pictures if the receiver wants to message
- If the receiver feels irritating, the activities should have stopped.
- If you are a bluejacker and caught in the act, you have to cooperate entirely and be honest about what you have done.
- Simple to use
- Penetrate through walls.
- Generate an Adhoc connection immediately except using any wires.
- Transfer voice and data.
- Slow data transfer rate of 3 Mbps.
- Available within a small range of 10 meters.
How does Bluekjacking take place?
If you are a hacker, it is possible to launch this attack in some easy steps.
- First, you have to look for a Bluetooth-enabled device in your instant vicinity.
- After that, your task is to pair your device with the victims. Whether you are willing to authenticate yourself with a password to set up the connection, use brute-forcing software. It can cycle through many password combinations until you get the correct one.
- As soon as you connect the devices, you can spam the victim with messages. In addition, it is possible to send images.
An IT consultant hailing from Malaysia performs the hacking method. He sends messages through his mobile to advertise a famous mobile phone company. It is how we got the concept of it.
Generally, this technique is helpful as it improves us in many aspects. But there are a few drawbacks also if you don’t use it properly. First, the technique is something where you can see the misuse of Bluetooth technology. The sender sends a junk message to the receiver’s device from his phone, which happens in malls, supermarkets, movie theaters, or restaurants. Usually, it occurs as a prank, but the receiver can get disturbed by it sometimes.
Comparing bluejacking, bluesnarfing, and bluebugging:
Bluetooth technology is not bulletproof, and it can experience different vulnerabilities and hacking tactics, threats, etc. The hacking method is one of those, and due to this, users get confused with other similar strategies.
Bluejacking: It allows hackers to connect to nearby Bluetooth devices. Besides, they can send unsolicited messages. If the transmitted content contains malicious components such as fake links, it can cause an issue.
Bluebugging: This technique targets smartphones. Hackers exploit a bluebug or a flaw for accessing a device. After that, they can cause more harm than bluejacking. They start mobile calls, send text messages, connect to the internet, and read contacts.
Bluesnarfing: The objective of the technique is to extract information. Hackers access different device components through a Bluetooth connection, such as contacts, calendars, photo galleries, etc. As a result, the attack may become devastating as it facilitates data theft.
How to Prevent Bluejacking:
If you’re willing to market your products and services, you can use this technique. But it is not recommended to use because it can confuse the receiver. As a result, the receiver may wonder why the device is causing issues. Sometimes, this hacking method can be irritating because the recipient has no idea who the message sender is. However, several ways are there through which it is possible to prevent the issue on devices.
Setting the Bluetooth on the Right Mode:
Whether you use the Bluetooth connection of your device more often, turning it on and off can be an issue. Hence, you have to manage the setting of Bluetooth to non-discoverable mode. It helps to hide your device from hackers or unknown people.
Put off the Bluetooth while not in use:
Whether you don’t need to use the Bluetooth connection frequently, you should keep off it so that it will not be present in the search list of the sender’s device. If someone tries to gain access to your mobile, following the procedure helps to keep yourself safe.
Factory Reset of the mobile:
Whether the device was perpetrated at one point indicates that the hacker’s device has been added as a trusted device on the mobile. It would help to reboot the mobile to remove all devices from the trusted list.
Keep Away from Strangers:
If you see any messages or connection requests from unknown devices, ensure that you have declined them. In most cases, attacks occur when people accept connection requests from strangers. As a result, the specific device of the attacker gets added as a trusted device.
Keep the device updated and password strong:
Ensure that you have made strong passwords and change them at intervals. In addition, you should update your device timely with the latest technology.
Set Password for Bluetooth:
Setting a password for Bluetooth is a straightforward process. First, you have to set a pin only or a password for the Bluetooth connection. After setting up the password, it will prompt a password that tries to pair with your device. Ensure that you should keep the password secured, and you must share it only with trusted people.
You can use iPhone, iPad, and other recent technology gadgets because bluejacking is not allowed on them. However, perpetrators send unsolicited messages which can hack your confidential data, and this technique is a harmful form of hijacking.
Go through these ways appropriately to prevent these harmful activities on your device.
Is bluejacking dangerous?
It can be harmful. For instance, it enables someone, even a stranger, to send phishing messages. Then, they send a message containing a link, and if you tap on the link, you can download malware onto the device.
However, it is not on the list of cybersecurity concerns. An attacker should present near around 10 meters away from the receiver for the nature of Bluetooth. It is a high-risk strategy because bad actors come with sophisticated tools.
What are the real dangers?
Several other threats are there that can cause issues. For example, suppose you are in a public place with a tablet, mobile device, or laptop. Hackers may target you in many ways.
- Online adverts are something you can see here and there, and a few are even more than disturbing. It is because hackers use malicious advertising or malvertising onto legitimate websites and never tap on them intentionally or by accident unless you may have malware downloaded and viruses onto your device.
- Phishing emails can spread malware. It is an act through which the sender sends a message through an email. Here, the sender acts as if it is a legitimate figure as a bank or a recognizable business. Then, they tell you to tap on the link. If you tap on the device, your device will get infected with malware. Besides, if you click on the link, it will expose login details for different accounts.
- Public WiFi is one of the techniques through which your device can be hacked. Whether you connect your device to the internet in a cafe or on public transport, you can’t ensure the router is safe. If you link to a hacker’s hotspot, you can see it named as an official WiFi connection. The public WiFi can expose your data while you send it over.
It would be best to use a VPN to protect your device from public WiFi. A virtual private network may not offer you protection from Bluetooth attacks, but it can ensure that you use public WiFi. Thus, it helps you not to expose your browsing activity to hackers and criminals.
In such cases, NordVPN is very useful. Using the virtual private network, you can take your online security to an entirely new level. With the help of the Threat Protection feature, you can keep your devices guarded against viruses and block intrusive ads. Thus, it is possible to prevent the viruses from loading, stopping internet trackers, etc. In addition, it also doesn’t allow you to go to malicious websites. Use the NordVPN cybersecurity tool to strengthen your privacy and make the web a protected place to browse.
It is a bluejacking website containing a few related stories taken from its forum. In addition, the site provides software enabling you to bluejack and let you also know how to do it. This forum website comes with more than 4,000 registered users and 93,000 posts. In addition, it has been featured in many news articles.
The forums were available from November 13, 2003, and have become the center of this website. This site comes with four moderators and 20 various sections for members. In addition, it added information regarding the site, reviews of smartphones, media players, PDAs & Miscellaneous devices, general bluejacking threads, and an off-topic area. Its podcast was available first as a test version on January 15, 2006. This one is the first bluejacking-related podcast.
The bottom line:
You can use the Bluejacking technique to interact with new people. Besides, it allows you to revolutionize the market by sending ads about the product, enterprise, etc., to devices supported by Bluetooth to let people know about these. As a result, people use it in different fields, including cinemas, train stations, shopping malls, mobile phone shops, etc.
In addition, several tools are available in the market. This technology is the key to advertising and interacting with the world. Moreover, it can find out the location messages on the mobile if a person is somewhere out. Therefore, there is some security problem you can reduce by taking these precautions.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What is it used for?
It is a type of hacking letting you send anonymous messages to Bluetooth-enabled devices but within a range. Hence, the attacker scans the surroundings and then looks for other devices. As soon as they detect a device, they will send an unsolicited message.
- Is bluejacking possible?
As it happens within a range of 10 meters, the attackers have to send a message to someone they can see. Multiple people use the trick to send an amusing message at random. Thus, they can know which mobile belongs to which person. The technique is easy-to-use, but all mobile devices don’t allow to send contacts via Bluetooth.
- Is it ever ethical?
Hackers follow a code of ethics. For instance, they will never send abusive, threatening, or racist messages.