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Hardware Hacking Privacy Wireless Networking Build

Researchers Turn Home Wi-Fi Router Into Spy Device 108

hypnosec writes "Researchers at University College of London have applied principles of radar used in defense and designed a detector using home based Wi-Fi routers to spy on people across walls. Using the principles behind the Doppler effect ... Karl Woodbridge and Kevin Chetty, at University College London, have built a prototype unit that uses Wi-Fi signals and recognizes frequency changes to detect moving objects. The size of the prototype unit is more or less the size of a suitcase. The unit contains a radio receiver comprising of two antennas and a signal-processing unit. The duo carried out test runs and ... they managed to determine a person's location, speed, and direction (even through a one foot thick brick wall). The device could be used to spot intruders, monitor children or the elderly, and could even be used in military applications."
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Researchers Turn Home Wi-Fi Router Into Spy Device

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  • by l3v1 ( 787564 ) on Saturday August 04, 2012 @06:26AM (#40876613)
    Passive radar has been researched and used for a while now, which is cool. And the reported thing would be cool too, if it would be passive and if it would not require a custom-built active-signal based wifi device with the size of a suitcase which is anything but covert. Also, through-the-wall radars have been used for a time, which don't provide too much detail, but can tell at least the number of moving objects and locate them. Again, this would be quite nice if it wouldn't require the placement of a custom device, or if it does, then it should be quite much smaller and not different in size or looks from any other router you can buy, and then at least they could place them in banks or wherever.
  • Re:Cool (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 04, 2012 @06:55AM (#40876705)

    In the hand of all good US army and intelligence everything is used for good... anyone else using it will be for bad bad terrorism...

  • Sigh.. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by gallondr00nk ( 868673 ) on Saturday August 04, 2012 @07:10AM (#40876747)

    Finding new ways to spy on people is something we seem to be really good at here in the UK

Always leave room to add an explanation if it doesn't work out.