Hacking medical devices to hijack secure facilities
Fahmida Y. Rashid reports:
People entering secure facilities—such as those found in military, security, and government agencies—are often asked to hand over their connected devices such as fitness trackers and smartphones. Those devices are stored in secure lockers and then returned when their owners leave the facility. All this is done in the name of national security since these connected devices could be hijacked to compromise the security of these facilities.
But what happens if the connected device is inside the person?
That was the question Dr. Alan Michaels, director of the Electronic Systems Lab at the Hume Center for National Security and Technology at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University set out to answer with a team of researchers. Michaels described how implanted medical devices—such as pacemakers and insulin pumps— could be compromised to listen to conversations, access classified information, even expose the location of these secure facilities in his presentation at this year’s Black Hat conference (which was offered virtually).
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