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Secret photos and videos on your iPhone

ottobre 21, 2010 Technology No Commenti

The choice of iPhone apps on the market is so wide that it seems that the mobile phone manufactured by Apple can do almost everything (with the exception of coffee… maybe!). One option that, oddly enough, no one has been deeply looking into so far, is to use the iPhone to take secret photos and movies.

This gap has now been filled: in fact, on iTunes, the Cupertino guys are showcasing Camera Camouflage, an application that turns your iPhone into a secret photo and video camera.

The application can make your phone ring on demand (for example at a specific time), just like a normal incoming call. When you pick up the receiver and answer this fake call, the camera will start working, and while everyone thinks that you are talking on the phone, you are actually recording them!

To take pictures, the shutter is activated by voice. By speaking in short sentences, every voice burst will be taken as a command, and you will be able to take pictures in sequence, while those around you are completely unaware. In addition, the shutter sound that the iPhone makes when taking a photograph will no longer be heard (which could generate suspicions in the people around you), but you will hear it directly into your ears.

Obviously, to run in hidden mode, the application disables the phone flash, so it is not advisable to use it in a dark place, unless you really want to be exposed. Surely this is an interesting tool to have on your mobile phones if you are carrying out investigations or surveillance activities professionally, but it can also be used, in a much more innocent way, to take photographs and videos of your friends in compromising or funny moments.

In any case, since the cost of the application is less than a dollar, it is certainly worth a try!

A watch or a radio transmitter?

ottobre 21, 2010 Technology No Commenti

Those who have reached the 35-40 years mark, when they were kids, were dreaming of a pair of two-way radios, or walkie-talkies, to play war or spy games with their friends, or to keep in touch with them at a (relatively) remote distance without having to call.
Later on, radio transmitters have been introduced into our every day lives, for example in homes with small children, giving mothers the opportunity to hear what happens in the babies’ room while they are busy with household chores.

In the age of cell phones, people tend to think that all communications should be conducted by telephone; on the contrary, however, radio transmission can surely be helpful to keep in touch within a short distance, without having to use the phone.

For example, when you are hunting in an area not covered by the telephone network, or for police forces engaged in an operation which requires a continuous and discreet contact, or simply for parents wishing to leave their children free to roam in a shopping center while they are busy spending their money on Christmas presents for friends.

In all these cases, a valuable aid may come from the use of an R-Watch, that is, a radio watch. Inside what looks like your ordinary wristwatch with a digital display, in fact, lies a powerful radio transmitter that can operate within a maximum range of 3 km.
R-Watch is also able to interact with other devices that use the same radio frequencies. Therefore, it can communicate remotely with anyone with a walkie-talkie.

For more information and details on the operation of radio watch, you can visit the Endoacustica website, a leading manufacturer and distributor of products for your security, as well as for audio and video surveillance and monitoring.

A new scanner against shoe bombs

ottobre 21, 2010 Technology No Commenti

The most annoying part of taking a flight is often the queue at the security check, and having to remove jackets and belts, empty your pockets and even slip off your shoes; the latter, although it is a mandatory security measure, besides being uncomfortable is often the reason of a significant waste of time.

To save time in security control, while ensuring greater efficiency in the detection of any hidden explosives, the University of Illinois has developed a new scanner that can quickly locate any traces of explosives used for preparing improvised explosive devices, such as TATP (Triacetone Triperoxide), the substance that is most commonly used for such attacks.

To detect TATP, this new body scanner uses a different procedure than that of other scanners currently present in airports, heavy and expensive equipment which, precisely for these reasons, is still not so widespread.

The project envisaged by these scientists, in fact, would be searching for TATP at molecular level, looking for particles in a color-based process. The sensors, in fact, have a plastic film on which 16 small dots are printed, each with a different color.
The pigment used to color these dots would change depending on the presence and concentration of TATP in the air around it, and the scanner creates a digital image of the object containing the explosive.

The whole cost is extremely limited. In fact, the image can be displayed on a regular digital camera; the scanner is very easy to use and it takes just a few seconds to detect any traces of explosives.
Unlike other scanners currently in use, that can be fooled by the presence of chemicals such as detergents, this new system is absolutely error-proof.

At this point, we just have to wait a while to see if the project will make it into reality, and the line at the airport could finally be faster!

Latvia, citizens are harassed by police

ottobre 20, 2010 Technology No Commenti

After being the object of worldwide envy around the world for a stellar economic growth following independence from the USSR, Latvia is the European country that has been most affected by the global financial crisis, and is beginning a slow recovery process.

One category of workers that does not seem to feel too much the effect of the crisis, apparently, is that of police officers, especially those engaged in traffic control. For them, crisis or not, nothing changes, because they continue to round up their lowly salary in a way that, unfortunately, is quite common in Eastern Europe, and that is, by harassing citizens.

If in the West the presence of a police patrol on the road gives you a feeling of safety, in Latvia it inspires awe. In fact, the ineffable police, instead of being deployed, for example, before a dangerous curve to encourage motorists to slow down, would rather wait after the curve, in order to catch and punish those who exceed the speed limit.

On top of that, driving a car with a foreign plate, means drawing attention from the traffic cops, who, for example, on a busy road, would single out the hapless tourist and stop him for exceeding the limits, and if he asks for proof of his violation, they would promptly respond that “the laser gun does not work”.

Obviously, however, everything is solved with some flexibility: just a little pocket money to the policeman on duty (usually about 20% of the normal fine), and the offense magically disappears… And for drivers from abroad, who in the local mentality are seen as rich and stupid, the amount of this bribe would skyrocket.

Traffic rules are nonexistent, and therefore can be interpreted in various ways, but never in favor of those who are behind the wheel. A left turn which is normally allowed, becomes suddenly forbidden when a patrol car is waiting around the corner.

And if you think that taking the bus can save you from such harassment, you are mistaken! On the streets of Riga, when the controller boards the bus to (rightly) verify that everyone has paid for their ticket, would not do it while the bus keeps going towards its destination.

Instead, the bus is stopped on the roadside, and along with a couple of women who check passengers’ tickets, a couple of  policemen would board as well, while a few more armed ones are waiting outside to stop anyone who should attempt to escape. In the West, this is called a disruption of public service, but in Latvia, people just shrug and keep going on.

On the other hand, in a country where the average salary is 500 euro and basically everyone has a second job, people have the right to pursue a decent living. For the Latvian police, rounding up their salary, though, means harassing others… Who knows, maybe in Riga and its surroundings,the saying “things were better when they were worse” is not so unfounded.

How to find out if my phone is intercepted?

ottobre 19, 2010 Technology No Commenti

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In an era where communication is mostly happening via phone, wiretapping must also be able to follow the new trends, and adopt new technologies. Unlike the eavesdropping of phone calls made on normal land line networks, however, cell phone interception does not require planting bugs on the line cable, or straight into the phone, of the person under surveillance.

In fact, in most cases, interception of mobile phones is carried through a device, as small as a suitcase, which can hack into the mobile network, decoding the encryption code that protects the conversations, and enabling its users (usually police or law enforcement) to listen undisturbed to calls that occur within a few hundred meters.

These devices operate in a completely non-invasive way, and the persons intercepted are generally not able to figure out that they are being listened to. Therefore, all the urban legends on this subject are completely unfounded, like the one that says that by typing in a particular sequence of numbers you can find out if your phone is under control, or that the buzzing sound that you can hear when your phone is close to a radio or TV (which indicates a connection to the nearest cell) is actually and interference caused by an interception device.

To protect our conversations from this kind of eavesdropping, the best way is to add an extra level of protection to out phone calls, by using an encrypted mobile phone handset. The conversations between two devices of this type, in fact, take place via an encryption key, which is installed directly on the cell and therefore impossible to access from the outside.

Just like an email sent in encrypted format, the caller uses an encryption key to make his call. If the call receiver has a phone which is equipped with the same key, any unauthorized listener can hear nothing but an unintelligible white noise. Therefore, for your secure phone calls, usage of an encrypted phone allows you to stay safe from prying ears.

In any case, if you have doubts or suspicions that your phone can be under control, certainly the best thing to do is to consult an expert. For all your telephone privacy needs, we recommend that you contact Endoacustica, with its several years of experience at your disposal to find the best solution for your case.

GSM Bug, remote surveillance in 4 cm

ottobre 19, 2010 Technology 2 Commenti

We heard more than once that “size does not matter”, and this is especially true in audio surveillance technology, in which very often the best results are achieved by using equipment the size of a few millimeters, which despite their tiny size are capable of providing outstanding performance.

For example, this is the case with GSM bugs, which can have a size even smaller than 4 cm, but which, thanks to a sensitive microphone, and most of all to their built-in SIM card, are able not only to listen to conversations that take place within their operating range, but above all to transmit their intelligence in real time to a distant listener, even on the other side of the world!

In fact, thanks to its voice-activated sensor, as soon as the GSM bug detects a sound above 60 decibels around it, the SIM card will automatically initiate a telephone call, towards a preset phone number (i.e. your cell phone number, for example), and you can listen live and in absolute secrecy, to the conversations picked up by its microphone.

The GSM Bug , thanks to its tiny size, is suitable for being concealed almost anywhere, with its battery which provides enough juice to operate for long periods of time. Concealing it in places such as the inside of a car, you can start listening in, as soon as it is switched on. In addition, the operating parameters of the bug, as well as its sensitivity settings can be changed remotely, by simply sending an SMS to the SIM card.

To find out in detail the operation of GSM Bug and of a wide range of listening devices, you can visit the Endoacustica website and contact our experts in surveillance, for a tailored advice.

Free WiFi, anytime and anywhere? Now you can

ottobre 19, 2010 Technology No Commenti

In our cities, it has become quite common to see people who, with their laptops or smartphones, roam around trying to find a free wireless network to check their mail, or to surf for study or work while they are outside.

Now, thanks to the latest technological development, a device called WiFi Stealth, this view could become a thing of the past, because anyone can become a hacker and be able to always find a free connection.
In fact, WiFi Stealth is not just a wireless receiver, but allows it to decode any key (that is, WEP security keys used to protect wireless networks), allowing its users to access not only open networks, but also to those protected with a password.

It has an operating range much wider than that of common wireless cards mounted on our computers or cell phones; in fact, WiFi Stealth is able to detect wireless networks within a radius of two kilometers, and with a simple click, you can easily decode the WEP key and access it.

It is a standalone device, which does not need to be connected to a computer to function, and therefore can be used to create a hotspot, simply by exploiting the wireless network from your neighbor of from the office upstairs.

The price that the manufacturer declares, on its website, is just over $ 150, surely a worthwhile investment in the long term, as it allows you to save on connection fees. Obviously though, such a technology is probably prone to a usage less innocent than simply saving on subscription, but it could put into the public domain some confidential information, stored on encrypted networks.

For further information, you can visit the Endoacustica website.

Marital infidelity? Fix it with a bug

ottobre 14, 2010 Technology No Commenti

It happened to all of us, or at least most of us, to have doubts about the reliability of their spouses, perhaps because of odd behavior, suspicious phone calls or unexpected absences. Often it can happen, fortunately, that such fears will prove unfounded, but this is not always the case.

To avoid sleepless nights and endless self-questioning, and to be reassured on the stability of your relationship, technology provides us with the bugs or hidden microphones, invaluable tools to solve cases of marital infidelity silently, unobtrusively and with maximum efficiency.

In fact, by connecting a bug to your home phone line, you can easily listen to conversations without the parties being aware. In addition, thanks to items such as GSM bugs, you can listen to these conversations in real time, even if you are on the other side of the world.

The bug, in fact, contains a SIM card just like the one of an ordinary mobile phone, and can be set to start operating as soon as the telephone handset is lifted. At that point, via the SIM card, it will automatically call your phone, enabling you to listen to what happens on the home phone, in a discreet and unnoticeable way.

The GSM bugs can be remotely programmed via SMS, and can be configured to suit your surveillance needs, to ensure absolute control of the situation. Power is supplied by connecting the cable directly into the mains, to operate continuously.

By using a hidden listening device, you can determine whether your fears are well founded or not, and solve the problem one way or another. For more details on the various types of bugs and their operation, you should contact Endoacustica.

Military security and sturdiness for USB drives

ottobre 14, 2010 Technology No Commenti

One of the latest developments in the field of data security, when files and documents are traveling on a small USB drive, comes from Japan, where Adata has just presented its last product for data storage, which has military-grade specifications in terms of protection and security of the files it stores.

This drive has been dubbed S007, with a nod to dear old James Bond and the gadgets you can see in his movies; just like the super spy in the movies, this USB drive is extremely difficult to defeat, at least for any hackers or whoever should find a lost one and wants to take a look into it. It is also shock resistant and waterproof, making it suitable for use in the field and in action, when the situation becomes dangerous, bullets fly and you have to get dirty if you want to complete your mission.

Also, when it comes to items suitable for military use, one must also take into account not only strength, but also data protection. From this point of view, the S007 drive is compatible with the most advanced military standards, in terms of encoding used for the encryption.

The data is also transferred quickly through the USB 2.0 protocol, and thanks to its OS To Go feature, you can launch Windows 7 on the computer you connect it to, without installation and without having to use the original DVD.

The cost and date of launch of the S007 have not yet been specified, guess we will just have to wait and, as good secret agents, keep eyes and ears open!

Biometric identity verification… through your ears!

ottobre 14, 2010 Technology No Commenti

With the advancement of biometric technologies for identification, the traditional method of ID-ing individuals by fingerprints could soon be obsolete, and our identity could be verified through our ears!

In fact, according to a team from the University of Southampton in the UK, every human being has different ears, unique in the world, and therefore they can be used as an identification method.
Moreover, unlike other biometric identification methods, their characteristics remain unchanged along the entire life of a human.

On the other hand, fingerprints may change due to a cut or burn, and therefore would not be comparable with a previous scan, while facial recognition systems would not be able to recognize the face of an elderly person if the stored image belongs to the same person when he or she was young.

The British University team created a software that can capture the biometric image of an ear, adding it to an identity verification database of the photographed subjects. This software is based on a technology that accurately measures the internal structures of the ear; that during the testing phase, it has shown a reliability of 99 percent.

The next step is to use it in real life situations, and more specifically as a form of identification at British airports; Stansted airport is already operating a biometric identification system with facial recognition, whose features were fine-tuned over the course of two years of use. Along with the reliability already proven, identification through biometric photos of the ear also has an advantage for the people being identified.

In fact, if for example for retinal identification, the person must be standing near a scanner that collects the image of their iris, this has disadvantages for the elderly or disabled. Instead, the software developed at Southampton gives the opportunity to collect the image with a special camera that can be used easily even on people with disabilities who can not stand or walk.

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