A new report from security firm Check Point Research shows how Qualcomm chips can expose your devices to serious security threats. Qualcomm’s Mobile Station Modem (MSM), which dates all the way back to the early 90s, can reportedly be exploited by hackers with ease.
Qualcomm MSM is commonly used in smartphones with 2G/3G/4G and even some 5G devices at present and it has a critical security flaw. This flaw can be exploited by hackers remotely as easily as sending an SMS text.
Once attackers take advantage of this exploit, they can listen to your phone calls, read all your text messages, and even unlock your SIM card to bypass restrictions placed by carriers. The report adds that around 30% of smartphones in the world use Qualcomm chipsets and are thus potential targets of the exploit.
The only fix is to keep your devices up to date with the latest security patches.
According to a different report from Tom’s Guide, Qualcomm already provided a security patch for the MSM exploit back in December 2020. This is because the chipmaker was warned of the vulnerability before the report went public.
Google also plans to address this exploit in its June security patch according to some reports.