Many of you will have heard of the Keylogger – usually a piece of software that records everything you type. Usernames, passwords, personal emails… the risk to your security is immense. However, I’d be willing to bet that you think you’re safe. You run an Anti-Virus application and an Anti-Spyware application, so these things can’t touch you… right?
Wrong. Until very recently, I was unaware of the availability of Hardware Keyloggers just like the ones shown in the pictures on this page. How often do you use a shared computer? When you do use one, do you look at the cables to see if a nasty little device has been clipped to the keyboard input? I’m guessing not – but if you did, do you think you would spot something as small and unobtrusive looking as this?
These things really could be a concern for those of you who use internet cafes, or computers in any shared environment – think schools, universities and even work! All it takes is some unscrupulous person to try to make some money out of these, and you could find your financial details are compromised, usernames and passwords stolen and you may even find that your bank accounts and life savings have been emptied. All because your password was intercepted.
Here’s a quote from a site that sells hardware keyloggers:
[our] hardware keylogger is the smallest and most compact hardware keylogger on the market! [it] is a small device that connects between your keyboard and computer on the back of the PC and directly records every keystroke typed: bar none. [the keylogger] can store up to 64,000 keystrokes, which equates to weeks worth of data.
- Holds 64KB worth of keystrokes (roughly 64,000 typed keystrokes).
- Compatible with all IBM/PC Computers.
- Compatible with PS/2 Keyboards.
- Undetectable by AntiVirus and other third party detection programs.
- Captures passwords, usernames, chats, e-mails, websites, and more!
- Completely Plug-And-Play – installs in seconds
These things are available to buy, and are used much more than we think. Personally, I find it frightening and can think of no legitimate use for a hardware keylogger whatsoever. It is designed to be undetectable by security software and the untrained eye.
So, you think “It’s ok. I only ever bank online at home, so I’m totally safe…” Well, you may be safe from hardware keyloggers (it would be unlikely that someone you allow into your home would have the ability or inclination to hook one of these up to your computer), but trust me… you may be just as vulnerable, if not more vulnerable at home!
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