Lasers can issue silent commands through microphones intended for voice control; A TED talk on the importance of transforming adversaries into allies; DNA genealogy could be a national security nightmare; Russian bird researchers broke their budget with roaming charges from tracking devices; and a Steem report describing China's planned cislunar economic zone between the Earth and the Moon
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- Lasers can silently issue 'voice commands' to your smart speakers - In a recent paper, researchers from Tokyo and the University of Michigan have described the method, involving the use of lasers, that they used to take over a number of different voice controlled devices. In one example, they were able to use a laser from a separate building to trick the digital assistant into opening a garage door. The digital assistants use a small plate, described as a diaphragm, to detect vibrations in the air and interpret those vibrations into voice commands, but through the use of lasers, these researchers were able to silently cause matching vibrations. The researchers said, "they could've easily made online purchases, opened doors protected by smart locks and even remotely unlocked cars connected to voice AI-powered devices by using the same method. " A complete list of devices that were hacked using this method includes: "Google Home/Nest, Echo Plus/Show/Dot, Facebook Portal Mini, Fire Cube TV, EchoBee 4, iPhone XR, iPad 6th Gen, Samsung Galaxy S9 and Google Pixel 2". Manufacturers, including Tesla, Ford, Amazon, Apple and Google have been notified of the issue. The researchers also note that putting tape over the microphone won't solve the problem, and the microphones need to be reengineered. I guess the moral of the story is: Until this is fixed, don't keep your digital assistants in site of a window.
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