Cryptocurrency: beware of mobile security threats!

The past year has been one of the worst ever affected by mobile piracy, especially in financial and cryptocurrency fields. Well, no wonder, cause the creation of new financial products is often accompanied by frauding behaviour. A new survey can help us understand the emerging “cybercrime” phenomenon According to a …

Professional spy bugs: why it is important to rely on top expert surveillance companies

The ultimate european statistics linked to online commerce are very encouraging. In fact, the revenue of global ecommerce for the past year is around 600 billion euros (24 billion only in Italy!), with an overall increase of almost 15% more of the previous year. Nonetheless, in this idyllic digital universe …

DVR ALL IN ONE: a spy recording system that beats competition

Among all concealable audio-video recording systems on the market, DVR ALL IN ONE is probably the device which better meets the professionals’ needs, as well as those ones of private people who deal with deferred A/V monitoring opertions. This principally because of its small size, allowing the concealment without problem, …

High power UHF digital audio monitoring system: the choice of professionals!

Among all audio monitoring systems equipped with UHF digital bug, the high power wireless transmitter receiver kit DIGI-UHF stands out for its innovative features linked to radio frequency listening from the distance. This amazing transmitting/receiving kit is commercialized with two kind of transmitters, DIGI12-UHF (400m range) and DIGI100-UHF (range over …

Microregistratori digitali

Do you have a vehicles fleet? Track them by GPS

giugno 8, 2010 Technology No Commenti

For companies that have a fleet of company vehicles, either cars entrusted to agents, sales representatives or managers, or trucks for cargo transportation, it is important to keep their movements under control, not only to make sure that it is used according to company guidelines instead of personal use, but also to intervene promptly in case of an inconvenience or an accident, which can always happen to those who travel a lot for work.

For example, to make sure that agents do not overdo with personal use of company cars, or that they do not use it to run a business of their own or with competitors, it can be useful to equip the car with a GPS tracker which, once mounted inside the car in an invisible way thanks to its tiny size, allows you to remotely receive its position at any time, and make sure that everything is under control.

Since it has a SIM card just like the one you have on your mobile phone, you can just send a simple SMS at any time, to receive immediately a message containing information regarding the car’s or truck’s whereabouts, even for more than one vehicle at the time (up to 40).

This GPS system is connected to a monitoring software which, installed on the monitoring computer at your office, can keep track of all cars. Thanks to this software, you can track the movements of any vehicle during the day and have them displayed with a graphic animation, with all data saved on a history file that you can retrieve at any time.

For more information concerning this GPS tracking system, along with a wide range of products for monitoring, surveillance and protection of your safety, we recommend that you visit the Endoacustica website, where you can contact our online experts for a specific consulting service.

A GPS navigator for the visually impaired

giugno 8, 2010 Technology 1 Commento

Those who have lost, or never had, their sight, are always forced to resort to an external aid, such as a support person or a guiding dog, as soon as they set foot outside their home. To make life a bit easier for them, at least during their journeys on foot, Na:Vi, the first GPS navigator for the visually impaired has just been created.

This GPS guidance system helps them not to lose their orientation in any situation, without having to use a dog or other people to find their way, and even without having to use the worldwide recognized white cane which identifies a blind person.
Na:Vi was developed by a group of Austrian designers, and at a first glance it looks like a comfortable and elegant bracelet, which beneath its modern look is packed with technology, like gyroscopes and laser sensors which enable the user to get oriented in the space close to him by spotting any obstacles on the way.

It is also equipped with a GPS navigation system, with a three-dimensional user interface. Thanks to this interface, it will be possible to “display” the directions in Braille, so that the user will easily be able to find his way home simply by running his fingers on the bracelet.

Therefore, this system, apart from being a valuable support under a practical point of view, is a huge step forward for the visually impaired on the way towards regaining self-sufficiency, with an undeniable benefit also from the point of view of morale; in fact, it helps to alleviate the sense of being dependent from others, that can often come along with suffering from diseases that make it impossible for their patients to live a completely free and self-sufficient life.

Police is after you… with a robot car!

giugno 8, 2010 Technology No Commenti

Those with the unhealthy habit of pushing a bit too hard on the gas, and maybe even willing to challenge the cops by breaking through a checkpoint or trying to escape the police chasing them, might calm down a little bit if the agents were assisted by Scarab, the prototype of an electric vehicle, completely automated, designed to help police forces during a car chase.

Designed by Carl Archambeault, Scarab is an electric vehicle unmanned prototype, which in normal conditions would just be side by side with the police cars during a routine patrol operation.

If during one of these operations, a car is seen speeding, the police officer inside the patrol car would send a signal via a radar gun to “mark” the vehicle, just like fighter jets do with their enemies during a battle in the air.

At this point, a signal is sent to the Scarab, and it immediately starts the chase, driving close enough to the offender until he decides to stop. Scarab is powered by an electric engine which makes it completely emission-free, and does not carry any kind of weaponry.

In order to make sure that the fugitive does stop, he might be equipped with an array of technological devices such as jammers, who would transmit interference signals which cause damage to the electronic systems in the car, forcing it to stop and wait for the cops to come on the scene.

For now, Scarab is just a prototype, real only in its designer’s ideas, but in the future, either it or the solutions that could be installed on it might really be used by police forces, much to the chagrin of heavy-footed drivers…

Your eyes can guide a camera in your glasses

giugno 7, 2010 Technology No Commenti

For now, it is only a prototype. But in the future, we might all have a microcamera embedded in our glasses, to record whatever we see and use it in a thousand different ways: to tape work meetings, to make a video out of the most important moments of our day, or to post movies of our everyday life on the Internet, with a real “point of view” flavor.

End in order to meet the needs of the “lifelogging” phenomenon, that is, of sharing one’s life on the Internet, Sony is running tests on a prototype of eye camera, that is, a simple pair of glasses, which on top of one of the lenses have a miniature video camera, equipped with an infrared LED pointed at the user’s eye.

The infrared light (which can not be seen by the human eye and will not disturb its user) is pointed towards the eyeball, to follow its black part and measure the eye movement, then moving the micro camera in the direction where the eyes are looking, thus recording whatever the glasses’ wearer is seeing or looking at in that moment.

Of course, for now this camera is only in its early stages as a prototype, which would not be very comfortable as it is in the photos, but for the future, they are of course working to make everything smaller in order to mount the camera directly into the frame of your glasses, and on top of that, to add a few features.

For example, the miniature camera might be equipped with a text recognition software, in order to copy the text you are reading (a function that could be very useful for university or college students as well as for spies on the lookout for compromising evidence), or with a GPS location device which would be able to record the exact geographical coordinates of what you are seeing, and these coordinated might be used in covert operations as well as by lifeloggers eager to share their current exact position at any time.

A laser gun to bring down enemy unmanned aircraft

giugno 7, 2010 Technology No Commenti

As explained recently, usage of UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) by the US Army is so widespread in war zones, that their total mission hours have just reached the one million threshold. Naturally though, the fact that pilotless aircraft do not bear any risk for ground personnel does not keep them safe from being, in turn, exposed to the danger of being brought down, in spite of the fact that their small size and their electric power makes them difficult to identify and strike.

On the other hand, the US Army is certainly not the only one that uses UAVs, and to defend themselves from possible enemy attacks or reconnaissance missions carried out via drones, the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) has developed a laser gun, specifically designed to identify and hit this kind of aerial vehicles, especially in scenarios of war at sea.

The gun, called LaWS (Laser Weapon System) shoots a laser beam, controlled by a guidance and location system; so far, during a series of test runs, the laser gun has brought down a total of seven remotely controlled aircraft. In the future, thanks to the integration of even more powerful and accurate laser beams, US Navy researchers hope that they can extend the system’s operating range, and power it up so that it can strike a diverse range of flying targets.

Thanks to these laser systems, it will be possible not only to bring down enemy drones, but most of all, to do it in a much more soet-efficient way when compared to the usage of conventional weapons mounted on rockets. Furthermore, the laser defense system could, in a future that we hope will never come true, be mounted on commercial airliners, as an active defense against potential terrorist threats and attacks with rockets or missiles.

A surveillance camera that writes what it sees

giugno 4, 2010 Technology No Commenti

Just yesterday, we mentioned a research project aimed at the development of surveillance cameras which can recognize what they see and understand the possible interactions thanks to visual intelligence.
Today we will talk to you about I2T, an acronym for “Image To Text”, that is, a computer-based visual system, developed by UCLA researchers in cooperation with Virginia-based ObjectVideo.

The software which constitutes the core of I2T contains visual algorithms which analyze the images and are capable of compile a sort of list of whatever they can see within the image. In practice, the image is broken down into a series of shapes, and the shapes are matched with a name.

The process of matching shapes with their names actually is based on a human factor. In fact, Song-Chun Zhu, the system developer, in 2005 participated in a project which involved cooperation from some art students, who were set to work on a catalog of more than 2 million images, identifying and classifying their contents in over 500 categories.

In practice, once the image is split into several shapes, these shapes are matched against the archive and the corresponding name is assigned to them. Furthermore, Image To Text is also capable of describing movements of objects within the footage and describe them with automatically generated sentences like “Man1 enters car at 23:45, leaves car at 26:14”.

Recurring objects can be stored and recognized, so a car previously seen will still be called Car1 when reentering the scene, instead of Car2.

The I2T system, which could certainly be useful for closed circuit video surveillance systems, needs a lot of improvement before being a real match for human cognitive capabilities, and hitting the market. Our friends working the night surveillance shift can rest safely, they are not losing their jobs!

One million hours of flight, with no pilot

giugno 4, 2010 Technology No Commenti

At the beginning of the war in Iraq, back in 2003, US armed forced were equipped with 13 pilotless aircraft, the so called drones or UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles). From that time on, the growth in deployment and usage of these systems has been exponential, until current days, when over 1400 vehicles of this kind are actually deployed in the war zones of Iraq and Afghanistan.

In the middle of April 2010, the drones used in Iraqi territory have “celebrated” a total of one million hours of flight. The overwhelming success of aerial video surveillance systems is mostly do to their efficiency in carrying out their missions automatically or thanks to a remote control, without having to unnecessarily put personnel’s lives in danger.

In fact, whether they are used for reconnaissance or target acquisition operations, thanks to the installation of photo and video equipment (also infrared for night vision), or they carry out real combat missions thanks to the application of warheads and weapons, UAVs (or UAS, Unmanned Aerial Systems) have revolutionized the modern idea of war, making it resemble a videogame, at least from the point of view of the UAV operator.

The first pilotless aircraft was used in Iraq during the first Gulf War after the Kuwait invasion in 1991. Since then, it took 13 years to reach 2004, when a total of 100000 hours of flight was reached, while nowadays, an estimate says that unmanned aircraft are carrying out at least 25000 hours of missions every month.

Recently, the US Army has released its Road Map for applications and usage of unmanned aircraft in military operations for the next 25 years. During this time, officials are planning to increase the usage of this vehicles in fields of applications such as evacuation of wounded troops and transportation of heavy material.

A robot fish to guide other fish away from danger

giugno 3, 2010 Technology No Commenti

When we are talking about dangers that may threaten the fish at sea, we do not mean those caused by other inhabitants of the water: Mother Nature is doing its job well enough without man having to stick his nose in it. We are rather talking about dangers created by human intervention, and just to name an example that has the world watching lately, the Gulf oil spill is before everyone’s eyes.

And when it comes to man-made threats, the natural defenses acquired over millions of years may not be enough for the fish to swim towards a safe haven. With this in mind, an Italian researcher from the Polytechnic Institute of New York University has created a robot fish designed to act as a leader for other fish and, by having them follow him, guide them to safety, for example away from the oil spill.

To achieve this task, the research team has observed a group of fishes’ behavior, coming to the conclusion that, in order to gain attention from others, the aspiring leader fish shakes his tailfin faster and more vigorously.
Once he gains their attention, he gathers them in a pack and leads them, and often these groups of fish are formed by different species.

Therefore, they have designed a black robotic fish, approximately 15 cm in length, with the aim of “taking over” the power among his live peers, recreating realistic motions by using polymeric materials which move as a reaction to a small electric impulse generated by an internal battery.

In the future, these robotic leader fish will be equipped with a battery that recharges itself automatically with motion, thus becoming almost eternal. They might be used to guide other fish away from potentially dangerous situations, for example to prevent them from swimming too close to the turbines of an hydroelectric power plant.

Visually intelligent cameras for US Armed Forces

giugno 3, 2010 Technology No Commenti

The Department of Defense agency DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) which works on research projects on high technology devices that are then used in war areas to provide a sensible advantage to the US troops over their enemies, has started a tender for an application called Mind’s Eye.

The name, slightly reminiscent of Orwellian atmospheres, is used to identify a project aimed at the manufacturing or intelligent cameras, or better, of cameras with visual intelligence.
Thanks to a specially designed software, these video systems will have to be capable of recognizing objects around them, to understand their usage and the possibility of interaction among the various objects on the scene.

Thanks to this kind of visual intelligence, the ultimate goal of the project is obtaining cameras that can be used to autonomously provide information on the objects and locations they see, not just by passively acting as a mirror and reflecting what they see, but “entering” the depicted area and giving their viewers the possibility of using the images to identify a potentially dangerous situation.

A camera equipped with this kind of artificial intelligence might be used, for example, for video surveillance of sensitive targets such as embassies or banks, where it could analyze any changes in the area around them, and determine whether these changes might represent or not a potential threat to the target.
Alternatively, they can be mounted on board of UGVs (Unmanned Ground Vehicles) used for reconnaissance missions in dangerous neighborhoods or urban warfare areas.

Thanks to Mind’s Eye, the Pentagon hopes to reduce any potential risk for military personnel, while achieving an analytical capability that the eye of a soldier may not be able to reach, especially after long hours spent in the sun or marching, when he could be overwhelmed with fatigue and stress.

Bug sweeping, to keep your conversations secure

giugno 3, 2010 Technology No Commenti

When in your workplace or office you are discussing important business strategies or information, ast any level, secrecy is a vital factor, especially if one of the keys to success is being faster than your competitors. Therefore, it is essential that any information exchanged during a decision-making meeting is kept safe and protected against prying ears, especially if there are substantial sums of money at stake.

In order to keep your environment secure, it is advisable to resort to technological aid, for example by installing a bug sweeping system which can use different ways to keep our conversations private. For example, to be reassured that no one has placed micro transmitters or hidden microphones in your office, you can use a bug detector, which would immediately expose any radio or GSM transmission source within its operating range.

Alternatively, to thwart any listening attempts that may take place by using a mobile phone (or, as explained above, through a GSM bug) you can use a signal jammer, which will create some sort of “island” where mobile phones can neither receive nor transmit, thus achieving two results in one: no news could leak outside, and no one will be able to disturb your meeting with an unwanted or untimely phone call, and the decision making process will not be influenced or disturbed by anyone outside.

Of course, in case of a bug sweeping operation that will be looking for concealed bugs or microphones, it is always advisable to consult an expert who will accurately scan and inspect your office or home, trying to locate any miniature listening devices that may be endangering the privacy of our job or of our personal life.

To do this, you can consult the Endoacustica website, where our environment reclamation experts will be able to give you a tailored advice.

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