How getting the screen repaired could let hackers take control of your smartphone


How many of us have got our phones repaired at one of those phone repair shops you find in the mall?

The answer would probably be most of us. However, a new warning has been issued about hackers planting spyware in the screen to gain control of devices.

The research which was conducted by Ben-Gurion University in Negev, Israel found that new screens could be installed on Android phones that would allow hackers to take control of the device.

The screens that are connected to chips allow hackers to take photographs and basically snoop on the user.

The team told The Times that the method is very effective as most people trust their screens and don’t see them as a threat.

The team from the university carried out the attack using equipment that cost around THB500 and said that the pieces used could easily be adapted to avoid the suspicions of the general user.

The lead researcher, Omer Shwartz said: “the threat should not be taken lightly” and said these type of hacks are “feasible, scalable, and invisible to most detection techniques”.

Alan Woodward, of the University of Surrey, added: “There is an old adage in security that if someone has physical access to your computer then it’s no longer your computer. If someone has access to your phone they could quite easily upload something.”

But Patrick Hunter, of cybersecurity company One Identity said the method was “entirely impractical for a modern mobile”.

“Phones are small and have little to no space inside,” he added. “Miniaturisation would be key and that requires mass production, which stems from a lot of expensive research.”


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