Hacker Technology

Hackers can Hijack iPhone or Smart Speaker with Simple Laser Pointer

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For children, toys like laser beams or pointer, once became everyone favorite. But apart from the laser beam disturbing pets, they are also able to hack your smart speakers. Researcher and Experts say that these laser beams can hack these smart speakers from hundreds of feet away.

But researchers at Michigan University and University of Electro-Communications, Tokyo reported in their research that microphones would respond similarly to a focused light point. This is a major technology flaw of these smart devices that allows a hacker or attacker to secretly perform several popular voice-controlled (voice command) devices.

Takeshi Sugavara, one of the study lead researchers, pointed out that it is possible that microphones can be confused to respond to the light of a laser beam in the form of sound. In simple words, the system working on voice commands in smart devices like smart speakers will work in the same way as on light commands.

It is possible to hack the smart device, because most voice command systems doesn’t require authentication. Therefore, attacker or hacker will not need any password or pin other than laser beam to hack it. Just to be in the range of smart devices or speakers, the researchers released on the Monday, said that they can easily command smart speakers, tablets and phones in the same building through a laser.

In one case, he took in control to Google home on the fourth floor of office from the top of a bull tower at the University of Michigan. The Expert said that through this, they can make online games, operate smart switches engaged in homes and other uncertain applications can be done. In the worst cases, the attacker can reach e-commerce accounts, credit cards, medical equipment associated with microspeaker.

Researchers have tested the trick on 17 voice controlled devices like Alexa, Siri, Facebook Portal and Google Assistant for seven months. These include Google Home, Echo Dot, Fire Cube, Google Pixel, Samsung Galaxy, iPhone and iPad. He managed to get control of these devices by using simple laser pointers, laser drivers, telephoto lenses, and even a smoked-up flashlight in their experiment. However, researchers do not yet know why these microphones respond to laser light in the form of sound waves.

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