Well, next time you see an unclaimed phone charger plugged to a wall outlet, you better be suspicious. Very, very suspicious because it might be a high-tech spy device that’s rigged to snoop out your password. So yes. It is a keystroke logger, but not that kind that you used to know that need to be installed on the subject’s computer. This one here, called Keysweeper, does it wirelessly. All it needs is a place to be, such as an outlet, and it will actively sniff out keystrokes made by keyboards in the vicinity, specifically wireless keyboards (but of course). The built in software will look out for trigger words like password, username and stuff, and send you an sms alert. After which you will be able to see what the user is typing via a web-based interface. Those keystrokes will also be logged, stored online and on the device itself.

Fake Phone Charger Keysweeper by Samy Kamkar
The web-interface

The device runs off the power of the outlet, but in the event if the device is unplugged from the outlet, an internal battery will keep it running and when it gets plugged back, that battery will recharges itself. Seriously creepy if your really think about it. The fact that it is actually a functional USB phone charger makes it even more creepy cos’ no one will ever suspect anything. So our suggestion is, don’t use old Microsoft -branded wireless keyboards because that’s what this Arduino-based Keysweeper is designed to sniff from. However, Microsoft dismisses this ‘risk’ by saying that Keysweeper is only effective on 2.4GHz keyboards released before July 2011, but Samy Kamkar, the man behind the hack, says otherwise cos’ he did actually purchased one such keyboard in recent time that’s apparently dated “07/2014”. Considered yourself warned.

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Obviously, this kind of shady device is not for sale, but you can build yourself one and may cost around $10-$80, depending the on the features you are after. If you are all up for it, then head on to Samy’s website for the full project breakdown. Before you go, there is a video below detailing the Keysweeper by the man himself but do note that the video is nearly 30 minute long. So go get yourself some coffee (or tea) first.

via TechCrunch

Published by Mike chua

Avid tech enthusiast, gadget lover, marketing critic and most importantly, love to reason and talk.