The iPhone users should not get too comfortable with Siri nowadays. We know that she might be your closest friend, she might know everything about you, what you hold dear, or the fact that you accessed a porn site last night and she might not judge you for it, but, for the time being, Siri might not be Siri at all. It has been revealed that there are ways to hack into Siri and you wouldn’t want that, would you?
A group of specialists from the ANSSI, a French government agency, have discovered that could gain full control of Siri from around 16 feet away. Yes, you read that correctly: you could be enjoying your coffee at Starbucks, casually browsing the internet on your iPhone while someone from two tables away gets in your phone and, implicitly, into your private life within a couple of minutes.
And there is no extraordinary gear required. In fact, what you need can be easily placed in any backpack or purse that anybody around you could carry. It’s freaky, right? It’s a rather simple hack that only requires some headphones, an integrated mic and another mobile device. Could you ever have believed that Apple devices can be hacked via radio in the 21st century? Welcome aboard. This is possible.
Headphone cables do pretty well for radio antennas and the experts figured out that the phone can be literally tricked into thinking that the voice is coming from within the phone, but it is coming for the guy behind you who you do not suspect one bit. The next step is for “Siri” to actually ask you a smart question and get some personal information out of you. You might think that Apple did a great job, but you are being robbed of information in plain sight.
But it is not that simple. Almost anybody would figure out that something is not right. What is worrying, however, is that a hacker could order Siri to send texts, call people, relog you to that porn site you were using last night so that you could get a virus or two or even set Siri to call the hacker’s phone, so that he can spy on you whenever he wants to. We are talking serious consequences here.
Luckily, Apple have made significant changes to voice recognition starting with iOS 9 so that Siri can be sure it is you giving the orders and not anybody else. This might turn into an issue that needs a final resolution in the iPhones to come, but if you do not have the iOS 9, just remember: Siri might not be Siri at all.
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