Good-guy hackers find a way around sophisticated security methods

Fooling high-tech security

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Passwords are a recurring theme in the Protecting Your Cyberturf segment.  We talk about how many all of us have, how secure they are or are not.  We have also talked about other forms of protecting your private information that may in time be the most widely used and secure ways to authenticate who you are.

Now we are getting word that even those most secure ways might be vulnerable, too.

Many people love the idea of supplying a fingerprint or some type of a physical identifier matched with how you like to swipe numbers or pictures to unlock a phone or account.  However, WBTV Cyber Expert and CEO of Fortalice, Theresa Payton has a warning for you.

Payton says good-guy researchers have been able to show how, with common household items and children's toys, they could guess and replicate a finger swipe.

"They found an inexpensive and easy way to mimic your exact swipes.  Did they use expensive equipment?  No, they made a Lego robot and gave it the expertise in mimicking your  finger swiping through a program and a finger made out of Play-Doh," she said.

The researchers taught the robot how to swipe a touch screen based on your patterns gleaned and how to steal your specific gestures, Payton added.

Her advice on protecting yourself is to consider ALWAYS enabling 2-factor authentication so in the event someone mimics your fingerprint or gestures you have one more layer, a text sent to your smart phone.

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