13 Jan This USB wall charger secretly logs keystrokes from Microsoft wireless keyboards nearby
Privacy and security researcher Samy Kamkar has released a keylogger for Microsoft wireless keyboards cleverly hidden in what appears to be a rather large, but functioning USB wall charger. Called KeySweeper, the stealthy Arduino-based device can sniff, decrypt, log, and report back all keystrokes — saving them both locally and online.
This is no toy. KeySweeper includes a web-based tool for live keystroke monitoring, can send SMS alerts for trigger words, usernames, or URLs (in case you want to steal a PIN number or password), and even continues to work after it is unplugged thanks to a rechargeable internal battery. That’s an impressive list of features, especially given that Kamkar told VentureBeat the whole process “took a few days” including a few over Christmas break and this past weekend when he decided “to properly document it.”
This “spy tool” only affects Microsoft wireless keyboards, and it allegedly works with many, if not most, of them. As a result, we reached out to let the company know. “We are aware of reports about a ‘KeySweeper’ device and are investigating,” a Microsoft spokesperson told VentureBeat.
KeySweeper exploits multiple bugs, including the fact that all Microsoft keyboards use the same first byte in their MAC address. Along with a few other holes, it can thus allegedly decrypt any Microsoft keyboard nearby without having to specify its MAC address first.