The ultimate keylogger?

Filed Under: SophosLabs

I came across an interesting piece of research the other day. Martin Vuagnoux and Sylvain Pasini from the LASEC, the Security and Cryptography Laboratory at School of Computer and Communication Sciences in Lausanne, Switzerland have discovered a way of monitoring electromagnetic emanations from wired keyboards.

The video, shows how by simply using an antenna and some obviously very smart software, keystrokes can be monitored remotely and decoded.

This reminded me of something called Van Eck phreaking, a way of monitoring what appears on a screen by picking up the emissions from the CRT using a soft drink can. I remember this getting a lot of press during the 1980s and a variety of different solutions brought out. Modern LCD monitors are less susceptible but evidently it can be done.

Whilst it's obviously an interesting piece of research I don't plan on lobbying the Sophos Product Management team to start including a roll of aluminium foil with each copy of Sophos Enterprise Security and Control just yet.

Watching the video of the keylogger, it would appear that the best defence from this sort of snooping is to learn how to type faster.


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