Google Working on Fix For SH1MMER Exploit That Can Unenroll Chromebooks – Slashdot

Neowin reports on “a potentially dangerous exploit capable of completely unenrolling enterprise-managed Chromebooks from their respective organizations” called SH1MMER.

The Register explains where the name came from — and how it works:
A shim is Google-signed software used by hardware service vendors for Chromebook diagnostics and repairs. With a shim that has been processed and patched, managed Chromebooks can be booted from a suitably prepared recovery drive in a way that allows the device setup to be altered via the SH1MMER recovery screen menu….

In a statement provided to The Register, a Google spokesperson said, “We are aware of the issue affecting a number of ChromeOS device RMA shims and are working with our hardware partners to address it.”
“Google added that it will keep the community closely updated when it ships out a fix,” reports SC Magazine, “but did not specify a timetable.”

“What we’re talking about here is jailbreaking a device,” said Mike Hamilton, founder and chief information security office of Critical Insight, and a former CISO for the city of Seattle who consults with many school districts. “For school districts, they probably have to be concerned about a tech-savvy student looking to exercise their skills….”

Hamilton said Google will need to modify the firmware on the Chromebooks. He said they have to get the firmware to check for cryptographic signatures on the rest of the authorization functions, not just the kernel functions — “because that’s where the crack is created to exploit it. I think Google will fix this quickly and schools need to develop a policy on jailbreaking your Chromebook device and some kind of penalty for that to make it real,” said Hamilton. “Schools also have to make sure they can detect when a device goes out of policy. The danger here is if a student does this and there’s no endpoint security and the school doesn’t detect it and lock out the student, then some kind of malware could be introduced. I’m not going to call this a ‘nothingburger,’ but I’d be very surprised if it showed up at any scale.”
Thanks to Slashdot reader segaboy81 for submitting the story.

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