A lot of attention has been paid to security on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. However what about wearable tech? Shouldn’t security for such devices be just as important? If you think that stealing information about how many steps you’ve taken or how many calories you’ve burnt isn’t a big deal, maybe stealing your passwords might be enough to make you sit up and pay attention.
Now some of us might not store our passwords or log into our banks via our smartwatches, but according to masters student Tony Beltramelli who is studying at the IT University at Copenhagen, our smartwatches can actually give away information about us that we did not know it had to begin with.
Beltramelli calls this deep spying, which is basically where hackers who can access the gyroscope and accelerometers on our wearables can actually deduce what we are typing based on the tiny motions our wrists makes as we type. The data can then be processed and then it wouldn’t be completely impossible to guess what it is we wrote.
This means that hackers could figure out your PIN to your ATM, or password to your bank’s website, and so on. Beltramelli’s claims are supported by research conducted earlier this year by the University of Illinois. According to one of the researchers He Wang, “While a user is typing at a keyboard, his wrist motion—even if it is ‘micro-motion’—can be used to infer what a user is typing.”
In the meantime you can see deep spying in action in the video above as Beltramelli demonstrates what he’s been talking about.