Just a couple of weeks back the world was grappling with the Wannacry ransomware. Here comes a recent revelation by scientists that the chat applications that we love to use for voice chatting are prone to hacking. It was recently done at BBC. In this chaos, Apple users are worried about the news that Siri a popular voice based personal digital assistant available on iOS is also prone to Voice Recognition attacks. Yes, it is and so are other voice based apps.
On exploring the topic a little more we learned that these apps are now used by the hackers to capture your voice conversation and to impersonate you where it can hurt you the most. That means your voice recognition based passwords are prone to Voice Recognition attacks now. If your bank accounts or other important accounts depend on your voice to operate, it is advisable to use multiple methods to login so that your crucial personal and professional information remains safe for online predators.
Methods of Voice Recognition Attacks in apps like Siri and WeChat
Most of the gadgets and devices that we use today do not come with a keypad or have a virtual keypad appearing only with the app. The users prefer to give commands through voice rather than bringing on the virtual keypad and entering the login information. To understand the threat, you must know how the voice based attacks are executed
- The attackers look for those who share recorded voice message through such social apps. Using the voice sample captured, an attacker uses any of the available tools to synthesize any kind of command they want to. These voice synthesizers can be easily downloaded from the Internet.
- An attacker can imitate your voice and record the malicious commands or voice message to impersonate you.
- The hackers can also replay your recorded command or message with a malicious intent.
How to prevent Voice Recognition attacks?
Though the research teams are coming up with new algorithms that can detect and prevent such threats, it is you who will be affected at the end of the day. So, to ensure your phone’s and credentials’ security you must do the following
- Keep an updated anti-virus and anti-malware software on all gadgets that are voice based.
- Do not rely on the single method of security. Increase the level of security methods by using a combination of text, voice and bio-metric security measures.
- Do not communicate through voice messages with the people you don’t know. DO NOT share your voice message in groups where you are not directly acquainted with every member of the group.
Wrapping it up…
The voice based smartphone apps though very tempting to use, do pose threats of information stealing, credentials thefts and other online hacking threats that the online users are exposed to.
Everyone using a Smartphone depend a great deal on this handy device with huge storage space. We keep our photographs, bank details, personal and professional data and perform financial transactions. Such threats from voice based apps can be very alarming. With easily grabbable voice samples of only a few bytes, your Smartphone can be compromised to devastate you in any way possible. In the days of unscrupulous means of getting rich, selling personal credentials has become a business of the hackers. So, it is better to be aware than repent later. Share your views with us in the comments box.