How Your Smartwatch Could Give Away Your Credit Card Pin

How Your Smartwatch Could Give Away Your Credit Card Pin

Cybercriminals evolve with technology. If there’s something new in the world of tech, you can be sure that cybercriminals will locate a flaw within that device and exploit it to steal our personal information. Now that wearable devices are all the rage, it’s important to ensure that your personal information remains safe. Unfortunately, wearable tech like smartwatches could give away our credit card PINs without us even knowing it.

How our information is at risk

A study performed by Binghamton University and the Stevens Institute of Technology discovered how our information is vulnerable when we use wearable tech. The researchers found vulnerabilities within smartwatches that allow cybercriminals to find out your credit card PIN and other private information.

There are malicious apps that are made to extract data from our gadgets using viruses, malware and worms. These apps are used by cybercriminals to hack into your smartwatch and steal your personal information. Through the use of a computer algorithm (a set of calculations used to process data) to mimic a malicious app, the researchers were able to extract enough data from smartwatches to uncover passwords, PINs and other personal information. The researchers were able to collect sensitive information with 80% accuracy on the first try and more than 90% accuracy by the third try. That means that if researchers can do it, then cybercriminals can do it too; probably with ease.

Why are wearable devices so easy to exploit?

Because wearable devices like smart watches require hand motions to operate, cybercriminals are able to mimic a user’s actions. Through their malicious apps cybercriminals can recreate the trajectories the user’s hand would make and steal our credit card numbers. The researchers also stated that the embedded sensors within our smartwatches like those that measure our heart rate, distance, and other exercise related activities are easy to intercept with a Bluetooth connection. Cybercriminals can sync to your device through Bluetooth and basically watch your phone while you’re using it.

What can you do to keep your info safe?

While we wait for smartwatch manufacturers to perfect their in-gadget security systems, there is something we can do. Use the hand that isn’t wearing the device to enter PINs and passwords. Also, change your passwords and PINs often and make them complicated but not too complicated that you cannot remember them. Use a combination of numbers, symbols, lowercase and capital letters.

Protecting your personal banking information is an essential step to keeping your financial state healthy. Contact Kevin Thatcher & Associates today for more information on various debt solutions.

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