Smartwatches and wearable computers are the hottest new gadgets in tech. It may only be a matter of time before you break down and get your first wrist-worn computer. It could be as basic as a fitness tracker, but using it, hackers can swipe any and every computer or Internet password you type.
Luckily a group of researchers at the Electrical and Computer Engineering Illinois program discovered this, and not actual black hat hackers. And, like so many cyberattacks on individuals, this one relies on the victim downloading a malicious app. As we regularly tell you, you should only ever get apps from official marketplaces, like Apple's App Store or the Google Play store.
The team of researchers made an app for the Samsung Gear Live smartwatch, though really this attack could be waged on any smartwatch. The app uses the smartwatch's accelerometer and gyroscope to virtually "watch" the victim's hand and fingers as they type. Using a form of statistical inference, shown in the video below, they then interpret what the victim was typing.
There were flaws in the researchers' hack. Numbers, punctuation and symbols weren't picked up, and you should be using these in creating your passwords. Click here to learn how to make super-strong passwords. Their malicious app could also only track the hand the watch was on. The researchers' video is below so you can see exactly how this smartwatch hack works.
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