A recent study has concluded that hackers can infect even the most secure computers in the world by monitoring their sounds and power usage. Using these methods, individuals with malicious intent have been able to hack into some of the world’s most well-protected software systems.
So how does it work? Basically, hackers have been able to time a computer’s data backup storage times judging by the noises they make as well as the fluctuations in power consumption. Since these viruses use an indirect source of information in order to time their attacks, they are labelled as “side-channel attacks”.
So how do hackers measure your computer’s power consumption? Well, installing a meter in your wall is the best way to measure power consumption, but, as you can imagine, this isn’t a very convenient method for hackers. Instead, they install load bits of code onto cloud data storage systems and wait for computer users to automatically download the script. Once downloaded, the script relays constant updates to the hacker regarding the computer’s power consumption – as well as other important indicators.
Making matters worse is the popularity of cloud computing, which uses a central data source as a depository of information across multiple internet-connected devices. With more and more people signing up for cloud storage systems, hackers have an endless supply of users that they can infect.
How to prevent these attacks
Fortunately, today’s best cryptographers are already looking at ways to prevent these attacks. If you keep your antivirus software up to date, then you’re already doing all you can to prevent this latest wave of malware.
However, if you’re not using antivirus software at all – or using ineffective, free antivirus software – then your computer is susceptible to these virus threats. Upgrade your software today in order to stay protected.