GeoHot hacking WP7 at Pwn2Own 2011?

We previously covered the famed hacker GeoHot possibly moving over to Windows Phone 7, and it seems that this is now possibly happening with Pwn2Own 2011 hacking contest listing GeoHot as a registrant on the Dell Venue, which is being held next week.

Update: We're now told Geohot had to back out due to the ongoing Sony lawsuit with him needing to devote time to that instead. Thanks, @aaronportnoy.

Contestants who have successfully enrolled will attempt to break a number of desktop web browsers that are used everyday by the average Joe that will result in cash prizes and laptops as well as mobile platforms. This year, along with Android, Blackberry and iOS, WP7 will be making an appearance. A TippingPoint spokesperson explained that “Due to the sensitive nature of the vulnerabilities we expect and the fact that an attack would require the exploit to be transmitted over RF, we will have this nifty RF enclosure from Ramsey Electronics on hand for testing.” The organisers plan to note mobile-based hacking attempts on the following devices:

  • Dell Venue Pro running Windows 7
  • iPhone 4 running iOS
  • Blackberry Torch 9800 running Blackberry 6 OS
  • Nexus S running Android

The details about how the attacks should be carried out are interesting too, “A successful attack against these devices must require little to no user interaction and must compromise useful data from the phone. Any attack that can incur cost upon the owner of the device (such as silently calling long-distance numbers, eavesdropping on conversations, and so forth) is within scope.” Seems relatively intimidating should a vulnerability be found, but there would never be security improvements if no attacks were carried out (in controlled environments of course).

So, we will have to see how the results turn out and if Windows Phone 7 can hold out against attacks. It should be noted that we mentioned GeoHot is listed for the Dell Venue which we all know is the Android device. However, stated on Pwn2Own 2011, the Dell Venue Pro will be the Windows Phone 7 test model and the Android toy is the Nexus S. Could be a simple typo and GeoHot is really going to engage in attempting to break WP7. We hope so.

If only the contest was being ran by yours truly. I would, instead of having WP7 hacked, have contestants attempt updating an Omnia 7 device with the pre-NoDo update.

Source: WinRumors; Thanks Lee Harrow!

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.