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Researchers Sniff Keystrokes From Thin Air, Wires

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the making-a-tempest-of-themselves dept.

Security 217

narramissic writes "Two separate research teams have found that the electromagnetic radiation that is generated when a computer keyboard is tapped is actually pretty easy to capture and decode. Using an oscilloscope and an inexpensive wireless antenna, the Ecole Polytechnique team was able to pick up keystrokes from virtually any keyboard, including laptops — with 95 percent accuracy over a distance of up to 20 meters. Using similar techniques, Inverse Path researchers Andrea Barisani and Daniele Bianco picked out keyboard signals from keyboard ground cables. On PS/2 keyboards, 'the data cable is so close to the ground cable, the emanations from the data cable leak onto the ground cable, which acts as an antenna,' Barisani said. That ground wire passes through the PC and into the building's power wires, where the researchers can pick up the signals using a computer, an oscilloscope and about $500 worth of other equipment. Barisani and Bianco will present their findings at the CanSecWest hacking conference next week in Vancouver. The Ecole Polytechnique team has submitted their research for peer review and hopes to publish it very soon."

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217 comments

lero (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173069)

first post

HELP! (-1, Troll)

TrisexualPuppy (976893) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173383)

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Guess what (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173075)

Upgrade to USB. Try to sniff that.

Re:Guess what (5, Insightful)

Jmanamj (1077749) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173195)

They could still do it through wireless. The keys emit a signal that can be picked up no matter what connection the keyboard has to the computer.

For all you paranoid conspiracy theorists out there that are busy shitting bricks, I will be developing a USB based jamming device that will saturate the area with dummy signals. Please send $100 via brown paper bag on doorstep courier.

Re:Guess what (4, Funny)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173371)

Real data thieves don't even bother with a keystroke sniffer: they know the sound of each key, so they only have to hear your password being typed to know it.

Re:Guess what (5, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173509)

I can't hear you sonny, type louder! [acm.org]

Re:Guess what (1)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173873)

Heh... I guessed it was possible, but I hadn't figured it had been done already!

Re:Guess what (5, Informative)

belmolis (702863) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173835)

A surefire way to get around keyboard monitoring is not to use one. It is admittedly rather tedious, but if you have good cause to be concerned about security, you can use an on-screen keyboard. As far as I know, they can't obtain the necessary information by monitoring your mouse signals.

Martus [martus.org] , a package aimed at human rights workers who need to keep their activities secret from hostile governments, includes an on-screen keyboard.

Re:Guess what (4, Funny)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174005)

A surefire way to get around keyboard monitoring is not to use one. It is admittedly rather tedious, but if you have good cause to be concerned about security, you can use an on-screen keyboard.

Tempest.

In future ITSO announcements:
Your pass-group must contain one of each of the following:

  1. 20 character passphrase
  2. keyfob fingerprint reader
  3. rentinal scan
  4. one spoken word (which may not be any of: [cut dear don't everything eye God I my no off out take thumb told you])
  5. MRI scan of you imagining your "happy place"

Re:Guess what (3, Interesting)

MadnessASAP (1052274) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174107)

One second while I tune my antennas to your monitor frequency.

Re:Guess what (1)

Xtravar (725372) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174211)

OR you can use speech recognition!!!!!

Re:Guess what (4, Funny)

internerdj (1319281) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173921)

So listening to mp3s on my computer is a security protection rather than a security risk? Hold on. I have to go complain to IT.

Re:Guess what (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174073)

Who modded this as Insightful??

Re:Guess what (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173407)

That's why you should buy my new brand of fiber optic keyboard. 19.95, Don't let those electrons slow you down, type at the speed of light. Soon to be banned in the USA, get them while you can.

Re:Guess what (1)

zonky (1153039) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174499)

Any idea how this affects laptops running off battery - i.e not connected to ground.

needs another tag (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173089)

This needs a Van Eck tag, for Stephenson's Cryptonomicon bit.

Re:needs another tag (1)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173447)

What is this "Va Neck" you speak of?

Re:needs another tag (1)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174493)

Van Eck phreaking is real stuff (as this article demonstrates), not a creation of Cryptonomicon.

Paranoid (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173091)

None of this would happen if you used ParanoidLinux... or would it?

The Illuminati are tapping our power lines! Run! Call Cory Doctorow! Call Dan Brown! Call John Munch!

Re:Paranoid (2, Funny)

SIR_Taco (467460) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173861)

Better get a tinfoil hat for your keyboard too.

Much ado about nothing? (5, Funny)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173115)

Sounds like a TEMPEST in a teapot to me.

Re:Much ado about nothing? (1)

geekmux (1040042) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173257)

Sounds like a TEMPEST in a teapot to me.

Sounds like a TEMPEST in a teapot to me.

Nothing you say? Here's the part where I tell you I knew what you typed before it posted.

Re:Much ado about nothing? (1)

Tumbleweed (3706) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173469)

> Sounds like a TEMPEST in a teapot to me.

> Sounds like a TEMPEST in a teapot to me.

Nothing you say? Here's the part where I tell you I knew what you typed before it posted.

No way, man, that's just because I surf in full duplex!

8N1 fo life!

Re:Much ado about nothing? (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173295)

So, now I have to look around and see if anybody is looking at an oscilloscope?

Re:Much ado about nothing? (4, Interesting)

Prof.Phreak (584152) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173343)

Yes, and wasn't there a declassified NSA thing about just this late last year?

Re:Much ado about nothing? (1)

DrLang21 (900992) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173687)

I'm fairly certain that I've heard about this several times before.

Re:Much ado about nothing? (4, Informative)

nicolas.kassis (875270) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174121)

They were talking about listening to the noise the keys are making through a computers microphone. This is worse. This is saying that someone can sniff you keystrokes through power lines.

Re:Much ado about nothing? -pretty much (2, Interesting)

johnjones (14274) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174137)

USN has been doing it for years so has the german MAD

remember security is an illusion

regards

John Jones

Re:Much ado about nothing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174471)

You saw nothing. Now mod down these posts so they disappear.

LOL, yeah (4, Informative)

Giant Electronic Bra (1229876) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173461)

You beat me to it. DOD has had a whole system (TEMPEST) for classifying this kind of EM emissions from secured systems at least since the mid 1980's. Nothing new about it at all. I recall working for a particular defense contractor where we had an entire 'black area' of the plant that was TEMPEST rated. Independent filtered power, EMF shielding everywhere, etc. It was pretty expensive to set up too.

Re:LOL, yeah (2, Insightful)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173953)

You could spend 2 billion dollars shielding something, or you could spend $144 an hour paying ~20 people minimum wage to sit on myspace, irc, and twitter all day and space them around your complex.

Possibly (1)

Giant Electronic Bra (1229876) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174273)

But then if you are required to comply with certain specifications by contract with DOD, it doesn't actually matter WHAT the rules are. You either comply or you get kicked off the contract.

Besides, there is a lot more to that kind of thing than just EMSEC. Those black areas are highly secure, physically, electronically, etc. Nobody goes in or out with anything on them, no electronics of any kind go in or out, no network links, no phones, no nothing.

There are of course various levels to these things, but you will NOT find classified data scattered around on systems outside a secured area.

Re:LOL, yeah (4, Interesting)

inKubus (199753) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174747)

Yeah, the university I worked at did some government work and actually used a mechanically isolated power system. Basically they had a big motor (or several, actually) and it was directly connected to a generator (with a flywheel I think). This meant a totally independent power loop as inside the building, and the flywheel smoothed out any spikes. Obviously not highly efficient, but a good way to decouple for security and safety purposes.

Good news, tinfoil hat crowd! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173117)

Tinfoil keyboards! Accessorize, baby!

Well, just in case... (2, Funny)

retroStick (1040570) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173119)

I will have to type "I know you're eavesdropping" every few sentences.

http://xkcd.com/525/ [xkcd.com]

Re:Well, just in case... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173253)

God. We all love xkcd, and we all already though of this right after we though of TEMPEST. These xkcd posts have gone from redundant to flamebait. For the love of Randal, please stop!

Fools.... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173135)

Two separate research teams have found that the the electromagnetic radiation that is generated when a computer keyboard is tapped is actually pretty easy to capture and decode.

...We at the NSA have known this for years.

Re:Fools.... (2, Insightful)

westlake (615356) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173717)

...We at the NSA have known this for years.

I can't imagine this story being news to Hertz or Marconi.

Re:Fools.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173825)

We know that... We've been monitoring your precious NSA traffic for years...

Touch pads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173137)

so iphone touchpads might be just the ticket?

Can they isolate an individual keyboard? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173147)

It would seem this could pick a whole bunch of keyboard traffic from any number of keyboards being typed at the same time.

Sounds like this could be used as a useful sniffer only if you could tag keystrokes from a specific keyboard.

As a reminder (4, Informative)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173151)

Publishing is one of the first steps in peer review.

Thank you.

Mouse (4, Interesting)

Dan East (318230) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173161)

This is exactly why I do all my typing with my mouse on an on-screen virtual keyboard. It's much faster too.

On a serious note, it is ironic that literally broadcasting a bluetooth signal over-the-air between a wireless keyboard and computer is apparently more secure than a hardwired keyboard.

Re:Mouse (1)

snowgirl (978879) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173301)

This is exactly why I do all my typing with my mouse on an on-screen virtual keyboard. It's much faster too.

On a serious note, it is ironic that literally broadcasting a bluetooth signal over-the-air between a wireless keyboard and computer is apparently more secure than a hardwired keyboard.

Well, it makes sense... after all, WEP is "Wired Equivalent Protection"... It's only when we're actually paying attention that this information is floating out into space that people really seem to notice or care that there are security issues.

Re:Mouse (4, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173307)

The nice thing about standardized wireless links is that they are so painfully insecure that people have a hard(er) time maintaining a false sense of security about them, which leads to more care.

One might also note that the PS/2 port is electrically compatible with the old AT keyboard that debuted in 1984, on a system with a 6MHz 8086. Not exactly an era where the computational cost of encrypting local busses was even remotely sensible.

Re:Mouse (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173845)

"One might also note that the PS/2 port is electrically compatible with the old AT keyboard that debuted in 1984, on a system with a 6MHz 8086."

Compatible? What do you think I'm typing on, you insensitive clod?

Re:Mouse (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174355)

A keyboard?

thin air: the new menace (5, Funny)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173225)

I couldn't help but think of drugs when I read the headline: Researchers sniffing lines of keystrokes, complaining about how thin the air has gotten since when they were young. By god, back then the electrons were so thick they had to use thick 8 gauge wiring to make anything work. Why, these days, the electrons have been used and re-used so much that we can use 24ga wiring for communications. Hey, are you gonna finish that line of qwertyuiop?

Re:thin air: the new menace (4, Funny)

andrewd18 (989408) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173341)

Clearly we need to get rid of this "air" problem. If there's no medium to sniff the keystrokes from, our children will be safe. WON'T SOMEONE THINK OF THE CHILDREN?

Re:thin air: the new menace (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173473)

Wish i could mod you Funny. Sadly, you could probably be modded insightful.

8 gauge wire (3, Interesting)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173749)

By god, back then the electrons were so thick they had to use thick 8 gauge wiring to make anything work.

Some years ago I waked into a computer store to buy a hard drive. Along one of the walls was a series of glass displays containing a small selection of vintage computer equipment. One of the displays contained a gigantic object that looked like it would take two men to shift. It consisted of a really massive looking cast metal casing out of which protruded some disks, arms, some clumsy looking circuit boards and the thing was powered by a quite sizeable 220 volt electric motor of the type one is used to seeing attached to a really big fat lumber saw. I had to take a few steps back before I realised the thing was a (8 GB as it turned out) hard drive from the early 80s and not a piece of industrial machinery with it's panelling removed. I walked out of that place with a 20 Gb hard drive in my hand. Kind of makes one marvel over how far we have come in terms of miniaturisation.

Will they be allowed to present their stuff? (1, Interesting)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173271)

I doubt these folks will be allowed to present their stuff. As a lay man, I cannot see a genuine use of this technology without breaking the law. I hope they will present.

When a product based on this technology is manufactured, the manufacturer could face a law suit on these grounds:

The defendant manufactured a product which on usage as intended by manufacturer, breaks the law. That's tough.

Re:Will they be allowed to present their stuff? (2, Interesting)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173549)

There's significant legal use for keyboard sniffing. Parents watching children and employers watching employees on company computers are both legal in the US.

As with ALL security research (3, Insightful)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173753)

As a lay man, I cannot see a genuine use of this technology without breaking the law.

As with ALL security research there's ALWAYS one legal use: Using the info and techniques to find ways to defend yourself against bad guys who use the techniques against you and to test that your defenses are adequate.

Re:As with ALL security research (3, Insightful)

harry666t (1062422) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174421)

...unless you're in Germany.

Re:Will they be allowed to present their stuff? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173923)

As a lay man, I cannot see a genuine use of this technology without breaking the law.

How about "because I can do it"? If I want to see if I can sniff my own keyboard to prove to myself that I can do it so I can say "hey! cool!" and maybe get some cool points from my peers...that's reason enough. You are borderline implying that we've moved into a society where only things that are explicitly allowed are legal. It doesn't matter if you cannot see a genuine use of it. Unless there's some demonstrated harm coming from it, IT'S LEGAL.

Re:Will they be allowed to present their stuff? (2, Interesting)

MoralHazard (447833) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174209)

How thin is the air, up there where you're at, that you somehow believe that they wouldn't be allowed to present? Why is that "tough"

Since when does the Canadian government ask whether there is a "genuine use of [a] technology without breaking the law" before they pre-emptively restrict free speech? I'm pretty sure that they don't--go wikipedia it, yourself, and come back and tell me if I'm wrong, OK?

So where did you get this idea that somebody could stop their presentation/publishing?

  * You may be confused by certain past cases (such as the RIAA/MPAA watermarking contest) wherein researchers are threatened with lawsuits by other private parties on contractual or copyright-related grounds. Zero application, here--these researchers aren't involved with any 2nd parties who have the legal standing and desire to bring such a tort.

  * You may also be confused by the DMCA, or its counterparts in other countries, which criminalize the distribution of devices or methods that circumvent copyright protection mechanisms, like DVD's CSS encryption. Again, zero application, because this has nothing to do with copyright law.

  * Is it possible that you were thinking of how governments will classify research that has national security implications, such as work on nuclear weapons or cryptography, muzzling the researchers with threats of criminal prosecution? Again, not an issue here--Faraday's law of induction isn't what you'd call a national secret.

So... Seriously: Am I missing something, here? Why DO you think these researchers would be stopped from presenting? And who do you think would do it, and how?

Re:Will they be allowed to present their stuff? (1)

taucross (1330311) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174317)

As a lay man, I cannot see a genuine use of this technology without breaking the law.

Military, defence, and government institutions make these laws for a reason.

Van Eck phreaking? (5, Interesting)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173327)

I remember talk about this in the 80's. Van Eck Phreaking [wikipedia.org]

Re:Van Eck phreaking? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174517)

if(dislikesApple()||!isDemocrat()){$mod--;}

if (user.writesInPseudocode()) user.setDork(true)

Re:Van Eck phreaking? (1)

belleb (1499253) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174741)

Actually I think it was done in the late 70's at one of the shows. Computer Fair or something. Someone was in the cheap tents outside and capturing what people were keyboarding. Jim Warren, I think, reported on it the Intellegent Machines Journal or was the Computer Fair paper?

What about multiple keyboards? (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173403)

I didn't see anything about them picking this up from multiple keyboards. It isn't that often that you encounter one person on one computer, really. I suspect it could be quite a bit more difficult to figure out the typing of 4 users sitting around you at the airport with laptops (to say nothing of the probable response in an airport elicited by someone using an oscilloscope).

Wow, welcome to 1985... (0, Redundant)

bziman (223162) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173409)

This sounds an awful lot like Van Eck Phreaking [wikipedia.org] , which was first described in 1985... this doesn't sound like anything particularly novel....

The solution is obvious... (2, Funny)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173421)

Change to Bluetooth. That'll fix 'em, by gum! Harrr! Can't fool ME that easily!

Wait... Oh, nevermind. The only solution is to shoot people with antennae. Damned criminals...

No, wait... No, wait... No, wait...

Hmm. This is interesting. Get back to you.

Re:The solution is obvious... (2, Interesting)

arminw (717974) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174671)

.....The only solution is to shoot people with antennae....

The solution is to allow nobody anywhere at anytime to have any secrets of any kind whatsoever. Jesus Christ speaks of the time in the future of the world when all secrets will be known by everyone.

Jesus Christ said in Luke 12:2 -- For there is nothing covered that shall not be revealed, nor anything hidden that shall not be known. 3 Therefore whatever you have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light. And that which you have spoken in the ear in secret rooms shall be proclaimed on the housetops.

In today's world, where people have selfish ideas and motives, security and secrecy are necessary evils. In a world where everybody knows what everybody else is thinking at all times and all places, anybody with evil plans would find it hard to carry them out. Someday, our world will become such a place where it will be next to impossible for anybody to do any harm to anyone else without everybody immediately knowing such an intent.

I knew this day would come (5, Funny)

loconet (415875) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173511)

I knew it. Many others have been discussing the potentials for this type of eavesdropping for many years. Ha! and they laughed at me when I started protecting [businessol.com] my stuff...

This sort of snooping was used in the '70's. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173517)

In 1981, my supervisor in the Air Force, based on training he had as a forward air controller in Vietnam, told me how easy it was to electronically snoop in on the keystrokes generated by electric typewriters. This was in response to my question about what the "secure typewriter" was that we were standing there looking at. So the whole concept was proven, in use, and being counter-acted, years before the Van Eck phreaking article was even published.

So I'm quite baffled by this "research" being presented well over 30 years after that.

Re:This sort of snooping was used in the '70's. (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173793)

[Military anecdote] So I'm quite baffled by this "research" being presented well over 30 years after that.

It can take decades for things to get declassified.

This is not news (2, Informative)

mbone (558574) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173591)

Google "Tempest." Some of this has been released, some not, but this is decades old.

Re:This is not news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174245)

Over 25 years ago I interviewed for a defense contractor. They told me about how they had special keyboards so that the signal could not be intercepted. Also everytime I went to the bathroom I would have to take the hard drive out of my computer and lock it in a safe. I forget if they had free coffee. I didn't get the job, so this did not become an issue.

In other news (4, Funny)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173619)

Stock prices for Alcoa shot up as stores reported a sudden shortage of aluminum foil. The Alcoa spokesman was at a loss to explain the sudden shortage.

Laptop keyboards (-1, Redundant)

bemymonkey (1244086) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173627)

So does this work with laptop keyboards as well? Is there also a ground cable here that acts as an antenna? For that matter, is the internal connection PS2? Most laptop touchpads still seem to be PS2...

Re:Laptop keyboards (1)

Ninnle Labs, LLC (1486095) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174365)

So does this work with laptop keyboards as well?

Gee, I don't know...

the the Ecole Polytechnique team was able to pick up keystrokes from virtually any keyboard, including laptops

mod dowRn (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173743)

se3. The number kill myself like don't be afraid

New secure UI (1)

maetenloch (181291) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173775)

Guess I'll have to use the caps lock LED as my secure interface except Doh! it puts out signals that can be sniffed as well.

CSI (1)

OfficialReverendStev (988479) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173791)

So how long until we see this misused on CSI as a technique to somehow find the killer? "And then we'll use his online handle to get his IP address and trace that to his house..." Ugh.

Thats It... (1)

thaddeusthudpucker (1082657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173823)

Thats it, I'm building a Faraday cage around my house. Try sniffing my emissions through THAT. Try hacking my wifi through THAT.

Hi, everybody! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173847)

Hello! So, this is my first post on Slashdot (I love the name! It's so clever. When I tried to tell somebody the address, h - t - t - p, colon, slash, slash, slashdot dot org they got soooo confused! I laughed at the sheer cleverness of the founders!)

Anyway, I'm just glad to finally be posting here on ole Slashdot. It's a pretty neat website, and looks so modern and clean! I wish I knew how to design websites as well as this one, I'd be a hit at the next office party after I redesign our internal bbs. It'll be super :)

So, how's everybody doing this afternoon :) I'm great! Hope to hear back from you guys soon! Until then, ~Jason.

pick this up (-1, Offtopic)

BigJClark (1226554) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173931)


w w w . r e d t u b e . c o m CARRIAGERETURN m i d g e t p o r n

FUD (5, Funny)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173941)

This is a plot by GUI users to spread fear uncertainty and doubt upon cli applications. May CLI live forever!

Sauce (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27173955)

Old news is old, can I haz sauce nao?

Simple solution (1)

mahohmei (540475) | more than 5 years ago | (#27173987)

Simple solution: have a dummy PS/2 keyboard feeding something like 100 random keystrokes per second into /dev/null. Problem solved.

not worried (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174095)

I can't even get a good wifi signal near my home router; try to sniff what you want, not worried

Use a Dvorak keyboard. (2, Funny)

Neanderthal Ninny (1153369) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174187)

Change to an Dvorak keyboard or even an foreign language keyboard "challenge" this.
However the way I type, they will have fun with all of those backspaces...

I Go To Two Girls One Cup When I First Get On (1)

CyberSlammer (1459173) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174235)

If a bunch of people start bailing for the restroom at Starbucks holding their mouths I have pretty much figured out who is logging my keystrokes.

I submitted this way back in October of last year! (1)

Phizzle (1109923) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174265)

My original submission was "Security and Cryptography Laboratory at the Swiss Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) doctoral students demonstrated four successfull techniques for sniffing keystrokes off various keyboards, including laptops, by analysing the electromagnetic signals produced by every key press. Not entirely new concept, but these guys were able to get data from 20m away. Time for Tempest Grade keyboards?!"

DK (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174271)

DOG KNOB!

Welcome to the 60s (2, Insightful)

oren (78897) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174329)

Look up "TEMPEST", e.g. in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TEMPEST [wikipedia.org] - this isn't merely "old news", this is "so ancient it dates before I was born", and I am old enough to have used punch cards.

This is why some computer rooms will never contain wireless peripherals or wireless networks or Internet connections; but will have an intimidating sign on the door, and combined biometric/keypad entry, and Faraday cages built into their walls, and a self destruct mechanism, and fences around them, and 24/7 armed guards, and a hot line to a fast-response team on a separate near-by base.

For everyone else, well, when you buy tinfoil rolls, remember to buy enough for your hat _and_ your peripherals cables :-)

Clearly Apple is on top of this already... (1)

eegad (588763) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174441)

Are there any lengths they won't go to in order to protect our privacy? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9BnLbv6QYcA [youtube.com]

brief question (1)

extraqwert (983362) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174467)

brief question: what is the safest way to login to my email account and check email, in the internet cafe? Assuming that the cafe is run by the mafia.

Re:brief question (1)

Ninnle Labs, LLC (1486095) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174507)

Leave that Starbucks and go to the Starbucks across the street that isn't run by the Mafia?

Re:brief question (1)

extraqwert (983362) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174697)

By Internet cafe I mean Internet cafe with terminals. Not a BYOL like Starbucks. I should have said ``a safe way'', not ``the safest way''.

Re:brief question (1)

ScottP22192 (1145651) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174841)

Use a VPN service such as Witopia.

WHAT ABOUT UPS BATTERY BACKUP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27174677)

as title, no additional text

Nice (1)

DaMattster (977781) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174771)

LOL! Soon we'll have to have keyboards and mice with SSL connectivity. Hold on a second .... I have to update my mouse and keyboard cert. They just expired :D

Wouldn't a parallel cable make this much harder? (1)

mark_osmd (812581) | more than 5 years ago | (#27174875)

Using a parallel keyboard cable would make it a lot harder to decode (that is if the main emitter is the cable).
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