Poodle Attack – What is It and How Can You Safeguard Yourself?

Poodle Attack – What is It and How Can You Safeguard Yourself?

Poodles are cute, right? Sure they are. However, the Poodle we are going to discuss in this post is “not cute”, it is a vulnerability with the help of which an attacker can break into your server and your computer, and then we needn’t even tell what bad could be done to you or your data.

First, What is Poodle Attack?

POODLE, short for Padding Oracle on Downgraded Legacy Encryption first came into existence in 2014 when it spelled the end of SSL v3.0. But, isn’t that something that was deprecated back in 2015?

Yes, it did and this brings us to –

How Does A Poodle Vulnerability Attack Works?

When an attacker carries out the Poodle attack, it intercepts the connection between your web server and browser, either or both of which are running an outdated protocol.

More specifically, the attacker exploits SSLv3 vulnerability which is further supported by older web servers and browsers. The attacker downgrades the server’s security protocol from TLS 1.0 to SSL 3.0. Once that’s done, all your confidential data is in grave danger.

Security experts recommend using TLS 1.3 which is an industry standard now.

What Can Be Stolen In A Poodle Vulnerability?

Account name
Source: Forbes

An attacker can lay hands on every bit of communication that’s exposed after the attack. Such information may include passwords, session cookies, login details, files, etc. When under a Poodle attack, both organizations and individuals are also at the risk of identity theft.

How To Save Yourself From A Poodle Vulnerability Attack?

Be Cautious of The Links and Attachments You Are Opening

Poodle Attackers
Source: websitesecuritystore

Attackers are often known to use social engineering tactics to try and drive you into running JavaScript after which the attacker can execute the attack. We’d urge you to go through our post on how you can know if an email attachment is malicious.

Upgrade Your Browser And Never Neglect Updates

Google Chrome Setting

You shouldn’t just update your browser to get your hands on the latest features. Though, yes, that’s one of the reasons to update your browser, but, there are several reasons why you should update your browser and one of them is to prevent yourself from Poodle vulnerability or man in the middle attacks.

If you are using Google Chrome which is one of the widely used browsers, updating it, is a very simple process. To do that, click on the three vertical dots from the upper-right corner of the screen. Next, click on Help and then About Google Chrome. Google Chrome will now look for any updates and within a matter of few seconds either fetch any pending updates and let you know that your browser is updated.

Please Use A VPN On A Public Wi-Fi

Most of us love to work even while we are traveling, even while we are enjoying a hot cup of cappuccino at our favorite cafe’ or while we are commuting through a metro. The reason being Wi-Fi here is free!

But, here’s something you should know (rather you might not know) that your hotel’s, cafe’s, airport’s or whosesoever’s Wi-Fi you are using might be unprotected. Attackers love to exploit an unprotected network.

A VPN is one such tool that can protect you against a man-in-the-middle attack on an unsecured network.

Here’s how –

  • A VPN like Systweak VPN encrypts your internet traffic with AES -256 military-grade encryption. With this encryption, it is highly unlikely that an attacker will be able to hack it. Do read our post on how easy it is to use Systweak VPN and strengthen your presence on the internet.
  • Systweak VPN comes with over 4500+ servers spread in 200+ locations, as such you will be able to surf through a server in some other part of the world and you will be assigned an IP address accordingly. So, even while you are surfing the web at an airport in Australia, you could attain an IP address of a server that is based out of the USA.

Systweak VPN

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Protect Your Website

Just because a Poodle attack downgrades a protocol to SSL v3.0 does it mean you should disable SSL?

No! What this means is that –

  • You should update your system to enable it to support more secure and newer protocols.
  • As for TLS, use TLS 1.3 as the older TLS protocols are vulnerable.
  • Also, use TLS_FALLBACK_SCSV which solves the problem of a failed connection and at the same time, it thwarts an attacker’s intent to downgrade your protocol to SSL v3.0.

Wrapping Up

As they say that prevention is always better than cure. To save your hard-earned data and your presence on the internet from a Poodle attack, ensure that the protocols your web server and browsers are using are strong. Also, when using the internet on an unsecured network, use a shield like VPN to keep miscreants away.

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