Security research. Yeah, that's what it was
"turns out the human body is a surprisingly efficient faraday cage.”
I'm pretty certain it doesn't need to be correctly placed in an anatomical sense in order to conduct security research.
DEF CON has a lot of odd talks, but the successful hacking of a vibrator by two researchers from New Zealand drew a big crowd. The two-person team of g0ldfisk and follower got hold of the schematics for the We Vibe 4 Plus, a U-shaped vibrator that can be controlled via Bluetooth using a remote control or a smartphone app. The …
"Top states searching for 'porn' are Mississippi, Texas, Louisiana and Kentucky. Not exactly known for their liberal social views."
This kind of statistic gets thrown around a lot, but I don't think it says what most people think it says. If you know anything at all about porn, you are never going to simply search for "porn" on Google; you're most likely going to just go straight to your preferred site, or at the very least search for something a bit more specific according to your preferences. So in fact, having the most searches for "porn" is exactly what you'd expect if those states really did live up to their reputations - the residents look at so little porn that they don't even know how to find it other than just blindly searching the word itself.
Just a thought, could folks in more socially liberal areas be using more precise search terms than 'porn' and thus confusing the research results?
I'd offer some examples, but you've thought of a few already yourself in the time it took to read this, if you're a typical Reg reader.
"Just a thought, could folks in more socially liberal areas be using more precise search terms than 'porn' and thus confusing the research results?"
This would hold more weight if the various other connected terms - including the names of certain sites - weren't also generally topped by the same set of states.
I'm pretty certain it doesn't need to be correctly placed in an anatomical sense in order to conduct security research.
As with any testing regime, there's probably bench testing as well as operational usage testing.
The latter may have some overlap with pen testing.
"Nope, that's against the law in these parts."
"The law's most outspoken backers have been a coalition of Conservative Christians led by Dan Ireland of the Alabama Citizens' Action Program."
Seems almost a clone of Mary Whitehouse's "National Viewers' and Listeners' Association".
What is it with a vociferous minority of so-called Christians that they want the Government out of their lives - yet insist in poking their noses into other people's bedrooms? The irony is that so often it is those who promote such campaigns who are caught with their trousers down - like Cardinal Keith O'Brien or various USA preachers.
You choose to take an admittedly kooky law in two states out of fifty in the US, and say that represents the other 48?
Assuming you are British (for the sake of argument) what if I choose to trawl thru some of the odder local laws in Britain? If I find anything questionable, may I laugh my arse off at "You stupid Brits"?
Basically just cool it with the mindless regionalism, okay? There's plenty of real issues we can be hurling around, don't need to make any new ones up.
...a humourectomy by any chance?
>>>Assuming you are British (for the sake of argument) what if I choose to trawl thru some of the odder local laws in Britain? If I find anything questionable, may I laugh my arse off at "You stupid Brits"?<<<
Yes. Yes, of course you can.
Friendly piss-taking like that, is^W should be a basic human right.
>Assuming you are British (for the sake of argument) what if I choose to trawl thru some of the odder local laws in Britain? If I find anything questionable, may I laugh my arse off at "You stupid Brits"?
No need to look far, "Brexit", there!
Yes mate, just this once, for spelling arse properly! :)
Do remember that we (Brits) have about 2000 years worth of laws compared to your 200 odd years* so expect there to be more idiotic ones which have slipped through the gaps than you have got.
My favourite is the one about men having to practice with their long bow on the village green after church on Sunday. Not recommended in these "terrorist threat" days even if you could find your local village green.
(* apologies to the indigenous nations, you have history to)
"It was a fairly sensible way of ensuring that your 'volunteer' army kept in shape in the rare gaps between wars."
Wars in those days were usually part-time affairs - even if they went on for 100 years. The winter was a time when both sides probably stood down.
As a lord's yeomen were a part of his estate workforce - then there also had to be seasonal breaks to keep the farms running.
"[...] early closing on Wednesdays (showing my age there)"
Several shops in our town's high street still have a half-day closing - although no longer all on the same day as it used to be.
In the 1950s I had a minor accident on the way home from school at lunchtime. Had to get first aid at the ambulance station as even the doctors' surgery observed the city's ordained half-day closing Thursday.
"[...] so expect there to be more idiotic ones which have slipped through the gaps than you have got."
The archaic archery law had its purpose in the days when a two-fingered salute had a precise meaning.
Modern UK laws are often stupid because of several things.
1) Too many bills are introduced for there to be proper drafting consideration. The Blair governments passed 3000 new criminal laws.
2) Politicians now have a knee-jerk reaction to any vociferous public issue. They often think that passing a law will solve a problem.
3) People are co-opted onto the drafting committee who have a vested single-issue, and themselves, to promote. These are usually vociferous conservative minorities, aided by some media, who see threats to their world-view everywhere.
4) When the drafting gets bogged down in awkward detail then the final bill will contain areas of vague proscriptions. It is then expected that the Appeal Courts will establish case law when the law enforcement agencies go too far with "mission creep". Unfortunately that assumes members of the public are prepared to run the personal risks of challenging such excesses.
5) Too many restrictive laws are now effected by "secondary legislation" where the government can effectively rule by decree.
"[...] the Bluetooth data string is only eight bytes long and the first byte controls the device’s mode."
Presumably the device could be hacked to change mode while in use? It is said that sexual responses are heightened if someone doesn't know exactly what is going to happen next. Gives "anonymous sex" a whole new meaning.
About 10 years ago I was at a birthday part for a female friend of mine at a bar with about a couple dozen of her other friends, and among the gifts she got was a vibrator meant to remain 'inside' that came with a remote control. After a few drinks she went to the bathroom to try it out, and eventually the remote control was being passed around. She thought it was funny for a few minutes, but then became a little uncomfortable with thinking about a dozen different people controlling what is happening with it over the space of a few minutes - and perhaps because it appeared to start having the intended effect - and demanded the remote be handed over :)
Tux icon, because it is the closest the Reg has to a "rabbit"...
" A few years earlier the contraption might have used line-of-sight infrared like a TV remote control [...]"
When remote controls used ultrasonic sound - the TV randomly changed channels every time you jangled a bunch of keys. Vibrating bed springs probably had a similar effect.
A few years back the Mrs and I were playing with similar device over dinner, after a quick burst of "action" it must have slipped a little further inside and so it became impossible to switch it off again. A quick trip back to our room became necessary between courses.
A couple of other stories of the perils of otherwise of such toys. Before they switched to using bluetooth they didn't seem to have even the basic security of pairing, so any control would work any toy. A couple I used to chat with on certain forum used to like to go out to a pickup joint occasionally and the woman would then enjoy flirting and dancing with guys she fancied. One time they'd just bought her a remote vibe and thought it would add to the fun if the husband could play with his wife while she was being chatted up. They ended up at the bar next to another couple who looked like they might be there to play the scene too, The two women started chatting and then both suddenly jumped. Both their toys had gone off at the same time and both husbands denied it was them. Someone else at the venue also had a controller.
This was a well known problem at the time. One of the better known upmarket vendors of such things held a launch event for some bloggers who review things like vibrators. At that evening's do it soon became obvious to everyone that everyone was on the same channel. Hunt around the review sites and you'll find the stories.
"At that evening's do it soon became obvious to everyone that everyone was on the same channel."
It puzzles me why R/C model cars from a major manufacturer always use only one channel's frequency in either the 27 or 40MHz bands. Is it penny-pinching to save the cost of tuning the coils during final testing? It means the kids can only race two cars at the same time.
When looking to modify them it appears impossible to buy other crystals with the right form factor. Pairs of standard R/C crystals aren't cheap either. Gone are the days when a crystal's form factor was big enough to grind or etch to a new higher frequency - or use a pencil to lower the frequency with a smear of graphite.
Couldn't come up with the right word for the orifices and streams that are associated with these things.
I doubt there is a lot of two-factor, or even one that is involved with making sure your vibrator is not buzzing in the wrong places.
Could we do a bit of spoofing to show that Sen. X is tingling Rep. Y?
I took a look at the processor listed. It is a bit old. The list price is higher than I would expect. Very few places pay list, but the list price is rough estimate. It's easily possible to buy a much less expensive part.
There is a fair chance that the device was picked because of the development kit. If so, it's probably almost exactly the example application in the development kit. Including the same packet size, with only the first byte having application-customized meaning.
Please tell me the device in question belongs to Tarah Wheeler.
Of all the revelations coming out of Def con, ATM, vehicle exploits etc, thank you El Reg for finding this one.
Backed hacker's packed slack crack hacked, penetration testing to follow?
It's U shaped? Oh I get it, I had to think on that for a minute.
A "Faraday Cage" refers to a very specific type of enclosure (usually a mesh to boot).
In general, they would have been more correct in just calling the human body an "attenuator".
Also, achievement unlocked - discussing Faraday Cages w.r.t. bodies on a Monday morning. The week is off to a good start...
What is it about religious twats that makes them opposed to sex? Typical, as soon as you're too old and/or too repressed you tried to stop everyone else having fun. Sorry but evolution put our "fun bits" right in front of us to a) remind us to keep using and playing with them and b) make it extra easy to touch/use/abuse each others! ( All in the context for a loving and consensual relationship of course. )
Nothing quite like getting a new toy from LoveHoney for you an your partner to see what weird and wonderful ways you can be "planes"(*)!
( * Get inside the other and other take each other to heaven and back! )
"Typical, as soon as you're too old and/or too repressed you tried to stop everyone else having fun."
You missed the other category - they didn't want other people having the same fun as they did. The "moral panic" over pr0n really got going in the UK when it started to be available to the lower classes through photographs and public art galleries. It was no longer the preserve of the upper classes who had previously controlled access to it.
It was the same thinking espoused by Mary Whitehouse and Lord Longford. Their moral superiority meant they were not affected by what they read or saw in their investigations. However they believed that anyone else would be instantly corrupted by it.
The same paradox exists still in the internet. People are employed to search for illegal pr0n. The more successful they are at finding a pr0n slant in innocuous things - the more successful their careers in that role. It doesn't seem to occur to them that the cesspit perception is only in their own minds.
The Church was influenced by St Augustine's proscriptions - yet he is famous for the quote when younger - "Grant me chastity and continence, but not yet."
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Why the hate?
This is just another hack of an IoT device. One of a class of device that also happens to have some potential for embarassment/blackmail to its users. Funny to the Reg crowd, cuz we are often, hmmm, bit weird. But it's still a depressingly common thread of IoT to have bad security. No more, no less.
But it's still a depressingly common thread of IoT to have bad security.
When I read about this thing sending usage data base to base, the only thing I could think of was "why ?" - just why on earth does it have to, and why do they collect it.
That's just fail all over.
Tempting to go and get one - apart from the intended use which I think me and 'er indoors might enjoy, give an opportunity to have a go at our Data Protection bods.
The thing has a remote control function. So you can send the missus a vibe during the day instead of a text. So it makes sense that there is a mothership server to intermediate through, but less so that they store and even less that they are not secure.
That said people struggle to use secure passwords on banking sites or routers, can't expect too much resetting of factory defaults on a sex toy.
All the developers have done here is bring masturbation up to parity with genuine beast-with-two-backs action. Now your vibrator can spill the beans* on your love life just as effectively as a jilted lover. I can see the red-top headlines now: "Five-times-a-night! Celeb just can't get enough, says her love toy."
*Not the most appropriate analogy, I admit.
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