Experts have long believed that if a computer is not networked or connected to the Internet, hackers cannot infiltrate it. But researchers at a German university say it is possible to access a non-connected computer through its speakers.
Michael Hanspach and Michael Goetz have published a report on how data, including confidential databases or keystroke logs, can be sent covertly at near-ultrasonic frequencies between already compromised machines. The researchers were able to use a laptop and its built-in microphones and speakers to establish communications over a distance of nearly 20 meters via super-high frequencies.
The authors note the sounds could be used to secretly transmit almost any type of data, from text files to private encryption keys. Recommended countermeasures include the use of low pass audio filtering in computing systems or a kind of intrusion detection system that analyzes a computer's audio input and output to identity any unusual activity.
From Calgary Herald (Canada)
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