66% or better

Unhackable Netbooks given to students

nb

Where would be the best place to test out an unhackable netbook? The NSW department of education in Australia thinks that college is perfect . They plan on distributing netbooks, preloaded with Windows 7,and iTunes. They also have bios level tracking and security, allowing them to be remotely shut down on command. With 20,000 of these in circulation, we would think that we’ll see someone proving the “unhackable” statement wrong. We can only hope.

[via slashdot]

Comments

  1. strider_mt2k says:

    unhackable netbook is wanking on your watch!

  2. Eddie says:

    Haha thats hilarious –

    Just another way of gathering intelligence – just a matter of time..

  3. Daft says:

    How can be That Unhackable.
    If you add a lcd front display and you bloody hacked it.

  4. Remarknl says:

    wtf! come on! we just had a few articles about flashing the bios with a serial interface!

    Thats the top level jou can hack, nothing above that watches you(exept for real people like teatchers)

    ofcourse we can hack this:
    if you can unsolder it, its hackable!

  5. Ivan_k says:

    @Collin. That’s because nnx didn’t hear me flick on the Weller :) Also GPS and GSM is so much fun with SDR and USRP. As if RF was ever uncompromisable… And RFID, it’s a riot! I thaught I’d never say this on the net, but right now I’m actually laughing out loud.

  6. Tof says:

    Does anyone else remember that CS4 doesn’t work with screens this small because it has a locked resolution for some of the windows so you can’t even click OK or CANCEL.

  7. Shadyman says:

    Hackproof? I’d like one of these. To try, of course.

    Step 1. Open case
    Step 2. Erase BIOS settings

    Step 4. Profit!

    Ok, on a more serious note, the adage of physical security being your last line of defense? That still stands true here. Even with ‘exploding dye packs’, all it would take is for one person to open theirs up, study where the dyepack *was* (since it exploded), and figure out how to open one without setting it off.

    All you need to do is open the case, and you’ve got direct access to a reprogrammable hard drive, a flashable BIOS, and probably even a JTAG header and/or debug port for the really serious.

  8. Collin says:

    @Ivan_k

    lol nice. lol ya that whole RFID security bull crap is such a joke.

  9. asa51n says:

    WOOHOO, Lenovo S10 parts will be flooding ebay shortly… EXCELLENT, i need a new keyboard… :)

  10. M4CGYV3R says:

    /me googles “Replace Netbook Bios”

    Unhackable my ass

  11. M says:

    These aren’t actually being distributed in college but in high school, after they leave high school hte netbooks are unlocked but still tracked.

    We have about a hundred arriving in our school’s IT department in about a month, and we already have a team of 20 eager students trying to find a way of unlocking them. We’ve ordered 20 extra and students are encouraged to find any way to make these function as laptops that… y’no, could be of use to education.

    Also, some have already been shipped for staff with a beta version of Windows 7. :|

    M

  12. asa51n says:

    Check out s10lenovo.com
    All you need to know about the little buggers!

    I wonder if USB boot would have priority??

  13. Helllo! says:

    Oh it’s sooo on. Unhackable my ass.

  14. Helllo! says:

    Lol M4CGYV3R wrote the same thing as me (“Unhackable my ass”) haha

  15. luigi517 says:

    unhackable…unsinkable…we shall see?

  16. Hunter says:

    @Helllo!
    Even ur ass is hackable o.O

  17. aztraph says:

    I bet the first one to hack this successfully gets a job offer

  18. Scott says:

    Sounds like NSW just did the best troll of all time….

  19. djdrewsgrl09 says:

    You know.. I think they think it is a game. I also think it is the most stupid thing on earth. If you haven’t noticed.. almost ANYTHING is hackable. Even with Windows 7… which is probably even worse then Windows Vista to work with and figure out.. trust me I have Windows Vista and some things are not as easy as they say they are.

    Anything with a simple internet hook up, or even wi-fi can be hacked. So.. good look in the whole.. “Unhackable” affair you guys.

    @ aztraph – your right, I bet you anything someone will be landing a high paying job for hacking into the stupid system. LOL.

  20. Zymastorik says:

    Anything can be hacked, everything can be tracked. So many still think they can circumvent the tracking and tracing controls and most of them are full of hot air.

    Anyhow, un-hackable is a bullshit term and that’s been proven time after time, so I await the inevitable Hack-a-Day post about that, in the meantime… I can’t help but wonder if this isn’t just a form of legal bot-netting… or soon will be. 20k netbooks on autopilot could do some serious computing.

  21. Ron says:

    It is feasible: just distribute the laptops with no battery or power supply. No power == no hack. :p

  22. Ron says:

    (At least remotely…)

  23. Mr Novack says:

    Only way to make it unhackable is not to have it connected to the internet or a network that is connected to the internet. Even have the bluetooth and wifi turned off too.

  24. Monkeyman8 says:

    “the most hostile place for a computer on earth – the local high school.” that just shows you they don’t know what the hell they’re talking about. anyone with any sense know defcon is the most hostile place on earth for a computer. I’m sure they’ve already been hacked apart and the story just hasn’t been posted yet.

  25. Zaphod says:

    Meh. Hackability is just a bios flash away.

  26. DivePeak says:

    Hey, I just plugged an Arduino into the USB port… See – it’s hacked now! Mwahahahahaaaa!!!

    Sorry – couldn’t resist…

  27. Dross says:

    These computers will be useless to 95% of students within a year if the Aust Govt continues with its plan to turn off the internet, more info at http://www.nocleanfeed.com/

    for the other 5% who are wise enough to tunnel out and ruin $50m of govt coin, good for them!

  28. tjhooker says:

    It has BIOS level remote managment. I know ASLR and NX on the OS level. Someone will make a tutorial and software flasher most likely. You gotta patch the BIOS, and remove the RDID. You could probably fix the OS monitoring if any exists.

  29. tjhooker says:

    RFID*

  30. Jehu says:

    Mate, the NSW gov is just bonkers. Even the TAFE network is full of holes. We used to shut down eachothers PCs remotely for fun. As for the dye packs (if they exist in these things) just chucking them in the freezer should take care of that.

    Humm, makes me want to go back to school. Doubt the’d let me though, lol.

  31. Steve Ballmer says:

    lol, windows 7 – “unhackable”. it was barely out of beta and had two huge exploits. making something unhackable is impossible, especially if it’s a closed source piece of shit like windows.

  32. therian says:

    It for schools, and what they mean by unhacable is that you cant play games in class nothing more serious

  33. s0lid says:

    Hmm need to ask them to send one over here and they’ll get it back in a day (shippings not counted) fully hacked :P
    Little solder jobs and reinstalls ::smoke

  34. cyanide says:

    this reminds me of the bulletproof vest thing.

    bulletproof vests aren’t bullet proof – they are bullet RESISTANT. meaning: a good soft vest can take a 9mm slug and a barrage of .22s no problem, but if you put a 12 gauge slug anywhere near that thing it’s gone.

  35. Jimbo says:

    These “unhackable” netbooks are easily defeated by doing a Bios update using a bios version from a similar model not released for these purposes. Done. GPS won’t even be recognized, OS can be nuked and no remote administration can be done. It’s more hot air than anything else. Almost all of the netbooks can have their bios reflashed from thumbdrives.

  36. O RLY??? says:

    Coreboot
    Remove GPS (if it has custom firmware)
    Install Debian

  37. Drone says:

    First they give your kids these controlled laptops. Next they ban your kids from using their own laptops. Next they start loading up the laptops up with Government indoctrination material your kids are required to learn. Voila – in a generation you have New Venezuela instead of New South Wales.

  38. sahibulumat says:

    thanks

  39. kenwoodplc says:

    if it is true so its very good.

  40. ashraj says:

    Solder a new bios chip. Remove any GPS or Tracking chip. You’re done.

  41. Max says:

    Being one of the students who will be recieving the laptops this week, I bet someone will hack them.

    If you guys are interested, I can put up a blog/image gallery/whatever and post info and pictures of the laptops.

    Happy Hacking!

  42. NNM says:

    oh well, if they say it’s unhackable, it probably is.
    No point in trying… *sigh*

    (Yea, right… lmao)

  43. luke says:

    @max you want to give us a url ?
    im with the rest of you guys.

    dye pack ? freeze laptop

    flash bios. install *nix … reuse gps and gsm as i would imagine there doing the tracking in software

    the first student to load osx on one of these. hell ill buy you a coke

  44. therian says:

    BUT students will have to pay for any hardware modification

  45. Max says:

    I’ll host it at http://www.maxexcloo.com when/if I do it (haven’t got the laptop yet).

    BTW, site is currently down due to my VPS being broken :p

  46. asd says:

    “allowing them to be remotely shut down on command” by admins or anyone who want pwn them

  47. Blizzarddemon says:

    I hate how they veiw hacking like its a bad thing. Hell I’ll be laughing my ass off when every single on of those networks gets tripped by false positives….it’ll almost top the xbox360′s rod. lol

  48. Blizzarddemon says:

    netbooks*

  49. Morgan says:

    Pahlease even MS says if you have physical access it is game over. They probably have application whitelisting, but Rootkit, bootkit, and that is gone, even if the bios is locked and the OS is only application whitelisted, simply backup the os and hack it in a VM to get the local admin password etc.
    I don’t think they are making the hardware really unhackable, just hard… oh noes security torx where oh where will I get them from, I don’t think they are going die-packs or even case opened switches.
    With such a large userbase it will be moments before they are broken.

  50. tjhooker says:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s