Lasers Can Replicate Voice Command To Trigger Smart Speakers

Anil - Nov 06, 2019

Lasers Can Replicate Voice Command To Trigger Smart Speakers

Researchers revealed how easy smart speakers can be tricked by a 'laser-made' voice command.

Laser seems to be a new vulnerability to smart speakers while a team of researchers has found out that using laser pointers can take over the control of users’ smart devices from a few hundred meters away. As conducted by them, laser sources like a laser pointer or a flashlight can trigger Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, and Google Assistant through their microphones.

Hacking Voice Controllable Devices With Laser
An experiment.

After half a year of experimentation, the researcher team has announced their discovery of the light flaw through a paper published recently. By using a telephoto lens that enables laser beam, they hijacked several smart speakers at a 230 to 350-feet distances. In particular, a Google Home device put inside a room in a building was tricked into opening a garage door while they were still in another building and used a laser modulation to simulate the common voice command that is “OK Google, open the garage door.”

The laser source was in another building.

In fact, researchers’ method is based on activating a small plate inside a device’s microphone, dubbed diaphragm, to replicate its movement and convert it into electric signals the device can read. According to them, this practice is not hard to do, and they could make use of it to access not only garage doors but also smart locks but also “smart” cars connected to digital assistants or online purchases with the same method.

At the time, a bunch of big names have been notified to fix the problem as soon as possible, including Google, Amazon, Apple, Ford, and Tesla.


Sort by Newest | Popular

Next Story