iSpy Spies and Leaks Text Typed on Touchscreen Devices [Video]

November 7, 2011, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

As time passes, technological advancements also grow at a rapid pace. For good or bad depends on how you see it, though.  Let’s tell you about a new technology that would even leak your messages and passwords the moment you type. Amused? Read on!

Yes, the iSpy software can do this with the help of a camera pointing towards your smartphone with a touchscreen display.  This new software, created by the Jan-Michael Frahm and Fabian Monrose from  the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, needs only a camera focused towards a touchscreen device within a range of 60 meters to track the words typed on the screen.

The program detects the text from the video recorded and even from the reflection on windows or sunglasses. If an ordinary mobile phone camera is used for video capturing, then 3 meters is the distance range. If the video is recorded on a digital SLR camera, the range extends to 60 meters.

The smart minds behind iSpy explain the functionality thus: When a person types on a virtual Android or iPhone keyboard, the letters will pop up in large screens. The software will detect the magnified letters from the recorded video and find out the words typed. They claim that the program can correctly spot the neighboring letters pressed by showing more than 90 percent successful attempts.

The software is specially designed so as to recognize the words individually and on the context of the message. A digital camera video within a distance of 12 meters is necessary to decode the reflections from the windows or sun glasses.

Meanwhile, the iSpy team has also suggested escape routes so as to stay off from the claws of this software. All you need to do is disable the letter magnification feature or use some type of plastic shields to cover the screen.

What do you think of  iSpy and its spying abilities? Tells us if you think this is good or bad.

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