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Smart Watches & Fitness Trackers Can Spy ATM PIN and Unlock Smart Phones

Smart Watches and Fitness Trackers: IoT has extends the connectivity of physical devices beyond the standard devices, it affects the daily lives of users and even their information security.

Wearables has increases the efficiency of data gathering, The researchers from University of Michigan and University of South Carolina found it is possible to add thousands of steps to a Fitbit using sound waves at different frequencies.

The experts are sure that IoT could contain above 30 billion objects by 2020 and its market value would be around $7.1 trillion by 2020.

The security researchers from Kaspersky published a research report on examining how wearable signals within wearable devices could allow attackers to intrude victim’s privacy and to gain access to the corporate network of the company they associated.

The most smart watches are cyber physical system that controlled by computer algorithms and they are equipped with sensors which are like magnetometers, accelerometers, and gyroscopes that logs user data.

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The Kingwear KW88 and PYiALCY x200 smart watches are selected for this study due to its simplicity of writing apps for them and they have developed a simple app for the study.

Tracking the Victim

With smart watch inbuilt accelerometers and gyroscopes signals readings, it can be assumed the user activity at the moment.

Whenever the user is walking, the hand wearing the smart watch oscillates like a pendulum. Pendulum swings are a period process, so it can be assumed that the user was walking at that moment.

Pic Courtesy: SecureList
Pic Courtesy: SecureList

But in the other segment there was no change with the periodic oscillations but the change in the accelerometer signal envelope axis. Possibly it could be a public transport with stops.

Another time slice is with the short periods of activities and unexpected hand movements, the researchers assumed the person could probably indoors.

Pic Courtesy: SecureList
Pic Courtesy: SecureList

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PIN codes

According to researchers, it is possible to capture the PIN code based upon accelerometer and gyroscope signals from a smart watch.

Pic Courtesy: SecureList
Pic Courtesy: SecureList


By deciphering the three axes of the accelerometer and gyroscope signals, a random person pin code can be detected with a minimum accuracy of 80%.

Computer and Smart Phones Unlocking

The unblocking of the devices over the hands movements and corresponding acceleration are minimal. Based on the cross-correlation of data for the corresponding aces of the accelerometer and gyroscope.

The smallest cross-correlation function values obtained for unlocking Smartphones (up to 64%), and for computer password it is the largest (up to 96%).

Researchers concluded that “without a doubt, portable cyber physical systems expand the attack surface for potential intruders.

The signals record can be transmitted by the phone to the attacker’s server whenever the latter has access to the Internet.”

“So an unassuming fitness app or a new watch face from the Google Play store can be used against you, right now in fact”.

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Content Retrieved From:> GB Hackers

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