Breaking News

Could your phone be secretly taking pictures right now? How hackers could hijack your camera to spy on you (and even read your chequebook)

0 0

  • Proof of concept ‘PlaiceRaider’ Android app  can turn on your phone’s camera to allow hackers to snoop around your  home
  • Personal data and private moments can be  gleaned from images

By Eddie Wrenn

PUBLISHED:03:54 EST, 1  October 2012| UPDATED:04:29 EST, 1 October 2012

A new app can ‘virtually steal’ from your  home – by turning on your phone’s camera and beaming images back to  thieves.

The software can even build up a 3D model of  your home, from which the hackers can inspect your rooms, potentially gleaning  information about valuables in your home, calendar entries as well as spying on  you.

The app was created by US military experts at Naval Surface Warfare Center in Crane,  Indiana,to show how cybercriminals could operate in the future.

New methods: Hackers can build up a virtual image of a room (left), and then inspect details at close-up - picking up details such as cheque numbers (bottom right)New methods: Hackers can build up a virtual image of a  room (left), and then inspect details at close-up – picking up details such as  cheque numbers (bottom right)

The PlaiceRaider creators even demonstrated how they could read the  numbers of a cheque book when they tested the Android software on 20  volunteers.

As long as the app could be installed on the  users phone, it can instantly begin beaming back images from the phone when it  senses the right conditions, and software on the other end can then re-construct  maps of the visited room.

The team gave their infected phone to 20  individuals, who did not know about the malicious app, and asked  them to  continue operating in their normal office environment.

The team said they could glean vital  information from all 20 users, and that the 3D reconstruction made it  much  easier to steal information than by just using the images alone.

Researcher Robert Templeman said their app  can run in the background of any smartphone using the Android 2.3 operating  system.

The research team said: ‘Through completely  opportunistic use of the phone’s camera and other  sensors, PlaceRaider  constructs rich, three dimensional models of indoor environments.

‘Remote burglars can thus “download” the  physical space, study the  environment carefully, and steal virtual objects from  the environment  (such as financial documents, information on computer  monitors, and  personally identi fiable information).’

Surreptitious: The phone camera can take pictures and then 'piece' a room back together as a 3D modelSurreptitious: The phone camera can take pictures and  then ‘piece’ a room back together as a 3D model

Surreptitious: The phone camera can take pictures and then 'piece' a room back together as a 3D model

The image quality is good enough to create a map of a  room, allowing the viewer to inspect objects in sight

Images taken at (left-to-right) six megapixels,4MP, 1MP and 0.3MP: The researchers say that, while the higher resolution is better, even low-res can provide adequate detailsImages taken at (left-to-right) six megapixels, 4MP, 1MP  and 0.3MP: The researchers say that, while the higher resolution is better, even  low-res can provide adequate details

PlaiceRaider will silently take photographs,  recording the time, location and orientation due to the sensors within most  modern smartphones.

It will then delete any blurred or dark  shots, before sending the rest back to a central server, which can reconstruct  the user’s room, based on information such as phone orientation.

Then the hacker can explore the user’s  property at will – for instance, scanning the room for calendars, private  details on computer screens, and cheque-books or card details.

Templeman said: ‘We implemented on Android  for practical reasons, but we expect such malware to generalize to other  platforms such as iOS and Windows Phone.’

The team offered various ways in which phone  manufacturers could secure their systems, for instance making it impossible to  disable the shutter sound on phones, so that a user will know if a picture is  being taken.

Some manufacturers have done this previously,  after many cases of mobiles being used surreptitiously for illegal or immoral  purposes, but the sound can be disabled on many models

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2211108/Could-phones-camera-secretly-taking-pictures-right-Hackers-use-lens-steal-private-data–build-3D-model-home.html#ixzz287JV3lSK Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

About Post Author

Ralph Turchiano

I have a strong affinity for the sciences which led me to create my sites. My compulsion for the past decade has been reviewing literally every peer-reviewed research article. Which can easily be validated by following my posts. To me, science is where the real news is, as it will mold our destiny beyond that of politics or economics. 😉 Please feel free to e-mail: 161803p314159@gmail.com
Happy
Happy
0 %
Sad
Sad
0 %
Excited
Excited
0 %
Sleppy
Sleppy
0 %
Angry
Angry
0 %
Surprise
Surprise
0 %

Average Rating

5 Star
0%
4 Star
0%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%

One thought on “Could your phone be secretly taking pictures right now? How hackers could hijack your camera to spy on you (and even read your chequebook)

  1. […] #split {}#single {}#splitalign {margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;}#singlealign {margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;}#splittitlebox {text-align: center;}#singletitlebox {text-align: center;}.linkboxtext {line-height: 1.4em;}.linkboxcontainer {padding: 7px 7px 7px 7px;background-color:#eeeeee;border-color:#000000;border-width:0px; border-style:solid;}.linkboxdisplay {padding: 7px 7px 7px 7px;}.linkboxdisplay td {text-align: center;}.linkboxdisplay a:link {text-decoration: none;}.linkboxdisplay a:hover {text-decoration: underline;} function opensingledropdown() { document.getElementById('singletablelinks').style.display = ''; document.getElementById('singlemouse').style.display = 'none'; } function closesingledropdown() { document.getElementById('singletablelinks').style.display = 'none'; document.getElementById('singlemouse').style.display = ''; } Could your phone be secretly taking pictures right now? How hackers could hijack your camera to spy … […]

%d bloggers like this: