A text message flaw can disable Windows Phone messaging

13 December, 2011 | Comments (48) | Post your comment

It happens to every OS eventually, especially young ones. This time it's Windows Phone - an SMS or a chat message from Facebook or Windows Live Messenger can be used to disable the Messaging hub.

It has been tested with Windows Phone 7.5 (builds 7720 and 7740) and seems to be a problem with the OS itself, rather than a specific device. After the attack, the Messaging hub is unable to start and the only way to fix it is to do a hard reset on the device.

If you have a Live tile pinned to the homescreen from the contact that sent you that message, the whole phone would freeze. The fix for that is slightly easier - restart the device and quickly remove the tile before it loads completely. You still won't be able to use the Messaging hub though.

Still, you'd be able to back up your photos and docs and stuff before you do a hard reset.

Here's a video demonstration of the attack shot by WinRumors:

The attack doesn’t seem to compromise the security of the device and the user that discovered the attack is talking with Microsoft about a fix. The special message used in the attack hasn’t been made public, so you're unlikely to get pranked by your friends with it.

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A text message flaw can disable Windows Phone messaging - reader comments

  • Anonymous

I love my HTC HD7 windows mobile - don't knock it until you try it.

  • Reply
  • 2011-12-16 23:45
  • 0pph
  • Joey

Poor windows... already a minority, still been targeted for malware. I wonder its is hard for the hacker to find those windows phone users in the wild.

  • Reply
  • 2011-12-16 05:29
  • F1@V
  • mr green

boo this...windows will provail :D

  • Reply
  • 2011-12-15 18:19
  • MVg6