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Strokes On Wireless Keyboards Could Be Intercepted

According to security company Symantec, cyber-miscreants could employ the alleged malevolent 'sniffer' program to capture critical credentials from people who use wireless keyboards.

A team of security researchers at Remote-Exploit.org through its study, 'Keykeriki,' claims that the software and hardware amalgamation could read the keystrokes made on any Microsoft wireless keyboard, which relies on 27MHz radio frequency, through an analysis of electromagnetic models.

This, in the researchers' perception means that if anyone strikes on a keyboard having a wireless connection then his strokes can be 'sniffed' from afar, theoretically allowing criminals to gain unauthorized access to usernames, passwords and other sensitive data.

The practice, although has been continuing since some time now, it is only recently that Symantec has become very concerned such that it is now suggesting people to go back to the classic keyboards if they desire a secured environment.

Besides, Symantec also cautioned computer-users that crooks, with the software, could obtain logins and passwords for Internet bank accounts with no need to plant malicious code on the target machine.

Of more concern is that since the malevolent program can be taken down from the net, cyber-criminals are free to use it just like far-off keylogging software.

Says product marketing director Con Mallon at the Norton division of Symantec that the inferences from this practice in future are pretty frightening, but the fortunate thing is that presently they are only in their proof-of-concept phase. PCAdvisor reported this, June 9, 2009. Mallon adds some people are simply attempting to prove that some day someone could easily intercept every keystroke of an unwitting user with no need to load anything onto the user's system.

He also adds, at the moment the data transmitted from a wireless keyboard to its computer is devoid of encryption so is vulnerable to attacks with the 'sniffer' software. Undoubtedly if this turns out true then it wouldn't be long when information between such keyboards and their PCs would have to be encrypted.

Therefore, just like the security specialists, Mallon too recommends that people in public places and offices should operate with wired keyboards to keep critical data safe.

» SPAMfighter News - 6/15/2009

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