Practical Mobile App Attacks by Example
A significant amount of confusion exists about what kind of damage is possible when
vulnerabilities are found in mobile apps. This talk aims to solve this problem by providing
a broad coverage of Android and iOS app vulnerabilities identified over multiple years of
penetration testing. The purpose is to provide a comprehensive repertoire of security
anti-patterns that penetration testers can look for and mobile app developers can watch
out for to avoid.
If you are the kind of person who enjoys talks with practical information that you can
immediately apply when you go back to work, this talk is for you, this talk is all action, no
This talk is a comprehensive review of interesting security flaws that we have discovered
over the years in many Android and iOS mobile apps: An entirely practical walkthrough
that covers anonymized juicy findings from reports that we could not make public,
interesting vulnerabilities in open source apps with strong security requirements such as
password vaults and privacy browsers, security issues in government-mandated apps
with considerable media coverage such as Smart Sheriff, apps that report human right
abuse where a security flaw could get somebody killed in the real world, and more.
The talk offers a thorough review of interesting security anti-patterns and how they could
be abused, this is very valuable information for those intending to defend or find
vulnerabilities in mobile apps.
This talk is for those who are intending to broaden their knowledge of mobile security
with actionable information derived from real-world penetration testing of mobile apps.
Examples will include very interesting scenarios of copy-paste attacks, calling premium
numbers from the phone, custom URLs, Deep Links, XSS, SQLi, RCE, MitM attacks,
path traversals, and data leak examples from real-world mobile apps, Apart from that,
many other issues, including interesting scenarios chaining several vulnerabilities, such
as achieving RCE via SQLi, persistent XSS, data exfiltration, etc. are also addressed.
Vulnerability chaining in mobile apps is covered not only for the fun of it but also to
demonstrate impact: Mobile app findings are typically downplayed given their relative
lower impact compared to server vulnerabilities (i.e. pwn 1 user vs. everybody).
Obviously, almost no modern mobile app stands offline nowadays, so this presentation
would be incomplete without covering some nice attacks against those mobile APIs
everybody forgot to test.
Please come caffeinated, the audience will be challenged to spot vulnerabilities at any
moment and there may be giveaways to the winners :)