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SimpliSafe SS3 Unauthenticated Keypad Pairing Vulnerability

Low

Synopsis

Without prior knowledge of the PIN, an attacker with physical access to a base station is able to pair a rogue keypad and subsequently disarm the alarm system.

There is a button on the bottom of the base station (next to the batteries) that, after being pressed, will allow new devices to be paired. Specifically, a rogue keypad (which is already paired to another base station) can be added to facilitate the attack. While paired to both base stations, the attacker can disarm the "victim" base station.

Also, please note that we could not complete the full attack in under 30 seconds (default entry delay before the alarm triggers). This limits attackers to an insider threat. A more feasible scenario is that an attacker could pair the rogue keypad while in the house, and disable the alarm at a later date (e.g. when burglarizing).

Proof of Concept

Note: The PoC below is just one example. We were also able to disarm the victim base station by entering the Setup and Naming menu, and then exiting out.

Follow the steps below to disarm an armed base station.

Assumptions:
  1. There is a "victim" base station ("BS1") with a keypad ("KP1") already paired.
  2. There is an "attacker" base station ("BS2") with a keypad ("KP2") already paired.
Instructions:
  1. Arm BS1 in "home" mode.
  2. Power down BS2.
  3. Power down KP2.
  4. Remove the bottom cover of BS1 to reveal the battery compartment. Press the small white circular button to enable pairing of new devices.

  5. Power on KP2. After the power on sequence completes, it should pair to BS1.
  6. After KP2 pairs, turn on BS2.
  7. Reboot KP2.

  8. After KP2 powers on, the display should say "off" (indicating it's talking to BS2).
  9. Press "home" on KP2.
  10. Press "off" on KP2 and enter the proper PIN for BS2.
  11. Press "away" on KP2.
  12. Once the countdown has begun, press "off" on KP2.

  13. Both base stations will be disarmed. The PIN for BS1 was not required.

Solution

Ensure your base station is updated to firmware 1.4.x or higher. This update was available prior to Tenable's discovery.

Disclosure Timeline

10/18/2019 - Tenable contacts [email protected] to see if they have a PGP key.
10/18/2019 - SimpliSafe responds with a link to their key.
10/18/2019 - Tenable sends vulnerability disclosure. 90-day date is 01/16/2020.
10/21/2019 - SimpliSafe acknowledges receipt of the report and will work to reproduce the findings and complete their due diligence. It will take "a number of days." Asks for us to share our PoC video.
10/22/2019 - Tenable shares PoC video.
10/22/2019 - SimpliSafe says they can view the video. Thanks Tenable.
10/23/2019 - Tenable acknowledges.
10/24/2019 - SimpliSafe informs us that our firmware is out of date.
10/25/2019 - Tenable asks what the latest version is. There are no release notes.
10/25/2019 - SimpliSafe says the latest base station version is "1.4.58.X".
10/25/2019 - Tenable confirms we were out of date. Updates to keypad 1.4.20 and base station 1.4.58.
10/25/2019 - Tenable states that the attack worked reliably against keypad 1.2.16 and base station 1.3.2. We ask if SimpliSafe can confirm this.
11/19/2019 - Tenable asks for an update.
11/19/2019 - SimpliSafe will get back to us with an update.
11/21/2019 - This report will be transitioned to another SimpliSafe representative.
11/21/2019 - Tenable acknowledges. Thanks for the update.
12/19/2019 - Tenable follows up. Asks about vulnerable version range for the disarm vulnerability.
12/19/2019 - SimpliSafe states vulnerable version range for the disarm vulnerability as 1.0 - 1.3. 1.4 introduced the fixes.
01/08/2020 - Tenable reminds SimpliSafe that we plan to release an advisory Jan 16 along with getting CVEs assigned.
01/15/2020 - SimpliSafe is working on a vendor response for the two-keypad issue. Expecting to send it to us tomorrow morning.

All information within TRA advisories is provided “as is”, without warranty of any kind, including the implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose, and with no guarantee of completeness, accuracy, or timeliness. Individuals and organizations are responsible for assessing the impact of any actual or potential security vulnerability.

Tenable takes product security very seriously. If you believe you have found a vulnerability in one of our products, we ask that you please work with us to quickly resolve it in order to protect customers. Tenable believes in responding quickly to such reports, maintaining communication with researchers, and providing a solution in short order.

For more details on submitting vulnerability information, please see our Vulnerability Reporting Guidelines page.

If you have questions or corrections about this advisory, please email [email protected]

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