Home Cyber Security News Vulnerability In Agora SDK Powering Several Apps Could Allow Spying On Video Calls

Vulnerability In Agora SDK Powering Several Apps Could Allow Spying On Video Calls

by Abeerah Hashim
Agora SDK vulnerability allowed spying

A serious vulnerability existed in the Agora SDK providing video chat and streaming facility to different apps. Exploiting this bug could allow an adversary to spy on ongoing audio and video calls. Thankfully, the developers patched the vulnerability before any exploitation in the wild.

Agora SDK Vulnerability

Security researchers from McAfee Advanced Threat Research (ATR) team discovered a serious vulnerability affecting the video-calling SDK from Agora.

This software development kit (SDK) provides a video-calling facility to different software. Hence, Agora SDK is commonly used by numerous social media and healthcare apps

The vulnerability, CVE-2020-25605, primarily existed due to poor encryption that made the calls vulnerable to snoopers.

Specifically, the problem occurred because the apps’ code had included the hardcoded APP ID that should ideally remain “safe”. Plus, the SDK transmitted the information over the internet unencrypted. Even if the app developers enable encryption, the SDK would still transfer sensitive information in plaintext.

Describing the bug, the post reads,

Cleartext transmission of sensitive information in Agora Video SDK prior to 3.1 allows a remote attacker to obtain access to audio and video of any ongoing Agora video call through observation of cleartext network traffic.

The researchers have shared all the technical details of this vulnerability in their blog post.

Bug Fixed

The researchers found the vulnerability in April 2020 after which they swiftly reported the matter to Agora.

However, it took several months for Agora to work on a patch, ultimately releasing the fix in December 2020.

Eventually, Agora released the SDK version 3.2.1 with the fix for this vulnerability.

Agora’s SDK empowers numerous apps including eHarmony, Plenty of Fish, MeetMe, Skout, Talkspace, Practo, and Dr. First’s Backline. It means the vulnerability indirectly risked the security of the customers of all these apps with millions of users.

Hence, now that a fix is available, all app developers must ensure upgrading the apps to the latest SDK version.

You may also like

Leave a Comment

Latest Hacking News

Privacy Preference Center

Necessary

The __cfduid cookie is used to identify individual clients behind a shared IP address and apply security settings on a per-client basis.

cookie_notice_accepted and gdpr[allowed_cookies] are used to identify the choices made from the user regarding cookie consent.

For example, if a visitor is in a coffee shop where there may be several infected machines, but the specific visitor's machine is trusted (for example, because they completed a challenge within your Challenge Passage period), the cookie allows Cloudflare to identify that client and not challenge them again. It does not correspond to any user ID in your web application, and does not store any personally identifiable information.

__cfduid, cookie_notice_accepted, gdpr[allowed_cookies]

Advertising

DoubleClick by Google refers to the DoubleClick Digital Marketing platform which is a separate division within Google. This is Google’s most advanced advertising tools set, which includes five interconnected platform components.

DoubleClick Campaign Manager: the ad-serving platform, called an Ad Server, that delivers ads to your customers and measures all online advertising, even across screens and channels.

DoubleClick Bid Manager – the programmatic bidding platform for bidding on high-quality ad inventory from more than 47 ad marketplaces including Google Display Network.

DoubleClick Ad Exchange: the world’s largest ad marketplace for purchasing display, video, mobile, Search and even Facebook inventory.

DoubleClick Search: is more powerful than AdWords and used for purchasing search ads across Google, Yahoo, and Bing.

DoubleClick Creative Solutions: for designing, delivering and measuring rich media (video) ads, interactive and expandable ads.

doubleclick

Analytics

The _ga is asssociated with Google Universal Analytics - which is a significant update to Google's more commonly used analytics service. This cookie is used to distinguish unique users by assigning a randomly generated number as a client identifier. It is included in each page request in a site and used to calculate visitor, session and campaign data for the sites analytics reports. By default it is set to expire after 2 years, although this is customisable by website owners.

The _gat global object is used to create and retrieve tracker objects, from which all other methods are invoked. Therefore the methods in this list should be run only off a tracker object created using the _gat global variable. All other methods should be called using the _gaq global object for asynchronous tracking.

_gid works as a user navigates between web pages, they can use the gtag.js tagging library to record information about the page the user has seen (for example, the page's URL) in Google Analytics. The gtag.js tagging library uses HTTP Cookies to "remember" the user's previous interactions with the web pages.

_ga, _gat, _gid