Chastity Penis Lock Company That Was Hacked Says It's Now Totally Safe To Put Your Penis Back In That Chastity Lock
from the fool-me-once dept
While we’ve covered the Internet of Broken Things for some time, where companies fail to secure the devices they sell which connect to the internet, the entire genre sort of jumped the shark in October of last year. That’s when Qiui, a Chinese company, was found to have sold a penis chastity lock that communicates with an API that was wide open and sans any password protection. The end result is that users of a device that locks up their private parts could enjoy those private parts entirely at the pleasure of nefarious third parties. Qiui pushed out a fix to the API… but didn’t do so for existing users, only new devices. Why? Well, the company stated that pushing it out to existing devices would again cause them to all lock up, with no override available. Understandably, there wasn’t a whole lot of interest in the company’s devices at that point.
But fear not, target market for penis chastity locks! Qiui says it’s now totally safe to use the product again!
Now, the European distributor of the chastity cage, which is called CELLMATE, wants everyone to know that it’s safe to use the device after the release of a new app, which it says fixed the vulnerabilities in the API used to control it.
“Our product and brand (CELLMATE) has received quite a bit of negative attention because of this publication. Now, you can think ‘negative publicity is also publicity,’ but unfortunately it turned out completely different for the CELLMATE,” Dennis Jansen, who works for Desudo, a distributor of the CELLMATE device, told Motherboard in an email, referring to our first story on the hack. “This wrongly created the image that our product could be hacked, after which the genitals of the wearer would be permanently locked up. Although such a situation was not even realistic at the time of publication (as you can read and see here), this story has made current and potential users unfairly frightened of our product. You will understand that this has had absolutely no positive effect on the attention and interest in using the CELLMATE.”
A couple of things to note here. First, this whining about press coverage is roughly as tone deaf as it could possibly be. Second, while an emergency release accessible with a screwdriver may indeed by a thing, it seems not every user of the device is aware of that, given that at least one victim claims he had to use bolt cutters which left him bleeding. “It fucking hurt,” he told Motherboard. Which, yeah.
But perhaps most important to this story is that anyone that actually wants to see the third party pen test for the API can go pound sand. Pen Test Partners, who originally discovered and reported the flaw, was reportedly brought in to assess the third party pen test as well. Asked if they would sign off that the device was now safe to use, reps from the company basically shrugged.
The founder of Pen Test Partners, Ken Munro, and the researcher who audited the CELLMATE, Alex Lomas, both confirmed to Motherboard that they did receive the third-party assessment and that the document says the issues are now resolved. But they also said they can’t confirm the results, as they have not audited the device and its app and API since last year.
“I don’t think I can comment more about the safety or otherwise of the product at this stage, I think people hopefully have enough information to make their own judgements,” Lomas told Motherboard in an online chat.
Not exactly a ringing endorsement, obviously. The point is that the reputation cost for any company that allows this kind of vulnerability doesn’t normally put a company in the position of trust for these kinds of fixes. That lack of trust likely becomes supercharged when people’s naughty bits are involved. What’s really needed here, should the companies and their distributors want to restore trust with the public, is transparency. Sadly, that doesn’t seem to be in the offering.