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London Futurists Message Board Books/Media For Futurists › Data-stealing 'smart dust' on the horizon?

Data-stealing 'smart dust' on the horizon?

Jonathan
Im-not-a-number
London, GB
Post #: 191
Fresh from the panic over Grey Goo, it now seems that we now have yet another miniscule menace to worry about... Since, in a Futurizon report "Life and How We'll Live It", Futurologist Ian Pearson claims that so-called "smart dust" will be creating the IT security nightmares of tomorrow.

To quote Mr Pearson:
Tiny specks of smart dust dropped through ventilation grills on office equipment will allow interception of data before it even gets to an encryption device. Slightly "cleverer" smart dust could even allow documents to be subtly altered while they are being printed.

Unfortunately, he neither explains how we're supposed to build and power these dust-sized computers or how they are supposed to connect with computer networks; but like a lot of predictions about the future, presumably the idea is to grab headlines and sell books, rather than bring real threats to our attention, or inform us of the possible counter-measures.

Dirk B.
user 9941666
London, GB
Post #: 200
Jonathan
Im-not-a-number
London, GB
Post #: 193
Ha ha,

I should have guessed there would be a roadmap of how this dust is supposed to develop somewhere.

So, how does the 'dust' extricate the stolen data from inside the computer chassis?

Dirk B.
user 9941666
London, GB
Post #: 201
I suppose there are a number of ways in which it could be done, for example, hacking wireless connections, recording the sound or electrical signatures of keyboard and mouse strokes. Maybe even sitting on the data lines of the motherboard.

Most of the driving force towards smart dust is now coming from the US military. They like the idea of dropping loads of it over enemy territory and just mapping every movement. In the meantime they will just have to make do with remote control rats:
http://en.wikipedia.o...­

or possibly squirrels:
http://www.npr.org/te...­

"Iranian news agencies this week reported the capture of 14 squirrels equipped with espionage systems along the border."

Last I heard is that the tech had been fitted to a bee, and directed in flight.
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