Google has always been serious about the privacy and security of its users, but the recent issue displays a completely different thing. Those who are using Chromecast are facing issues related to privacy. Let us find out more about this issue and how it can be fixed.
Do you use Google Chromecast? If yes, then you might not be aware of the fact that your exact location can be determined in a matter of one minute. This is a big jolt to the privacy of the users. Google must do something to fix this or else it is going to lose a significant number of users because nobody likes his/her privacy getting shattered.
Google needs to fix the problem that has arrived in Chromecast. The same problem has sprouted in Google Home, which makes things more difficult for users who are using both, Chromecast and Home. Many experts say that there has been a bug in the systems, which has created this problem, so that bug needs to be flushed out of the system. According to researchers Craig Young and Brian Krebs, an authentication vulnerability is allowing anyone to get the exact address of the devices.
The bug can be played on both Windows and Mac OS devices: just connect them to the same Wi-Fi network as the Google device. To discover the location, hackers would send a fake link to the user, such as a copy of the IRS website or any other page that catches the eye, for example – in order to keep the target with content open for about a minute.
As the user browses through the fake site, the hacker can remotely cross-check Wi-Fi network information, such as signal strength, with Google’s geolocation services. In this case, none of the devices need to have the GPS on, as the company maintains the position always stored – a fact that can be proven when trying to see “My location” in Google Maps without the positioning system activated.
According to experts who discovered the fault, the location can be determined with an accuracy of about 9 meters. This makes the problem more dangerous than tracking an IP address, which estimates the user’s position at about 5 km. In this way, hackers receive more accurate data to use in phishing or extortion, like they will have precise information as to where the person lives. This is not a good thing to happen because this can result in bigger problems for the users.
How to protect yourself
Until Google solves the problem, users should be aware of the links they access. Always be wary of sites that do not offer the “HTTPS” security protocol, indicated by the green color at the beginning of the URL. Also, try to analyze who sent the page, and if you click on the address and suspect something as soon as it opens, close the browser as soon as possible.
As they say, prevention is better than cure. Therefore, it is better to perform the aforementioned steps to protect yourself against hackers and other harmful elements of society. Google is trying what it can, but let’s just not sit thinking that the company would do something to safeguard the interest of the users. One should do all the things to protect his/her safety.