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DaDude

Are wireless keyboards a security risk?

34 posts in this topic

I only use wired for this exact reason. I bought a wireless keyboard/mouse combo some time ago and did a test in terms of range. The signal being transmitted was strong enough that the keyboard/mouse would still work outside my house, even from the footpath (10 metres plus). I did some further research and also found that the data being sent (on this particular model) was unencrypted! With the right equipment (programmable Bluetooth dongle/DSO with serial decoding) it would be quite easy for someone to decode the data, because it all complies with serial data standards. I wonder what would happen if my neighbour bought the same hardware.

If you?re worried about security, stick with wired. You also won?t have to worry about any RF radiation being transmitted (possibly slowly cooking your cells) and changing batteries.

You do know that bluetooth is encrypted.

http://www.nsa.gov/ia/_files/factsheets/I732-016R-07.pdf

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make sure the build this too... It is offers the best encryption to date and so far has been uncrackable. If you use 2 layers, there is no way ANYONE is getting through it.

tin-foil-hat.jpg

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I never really thought much about them until I started using them at work. They're pretty cool. The only thing that bugs me is the changing of batteries, but Logitech claims that the mouse (M510) and keyboard (K360) should last 2 years and 3 years, respectively, without battery changing. We shall see.

My Logitech wireless mouse at work (MK320 combo) is supposed to have a 1 year life before changing batteries, but I only had it for two months and already, the low battery indicator is blinking. But then again, I work almost 12 hours a day, so I didn't expect the battery to last too long, lol.

I went to post before reading your whole comment, but yeah I too find the batteries don't last that long either.

I guess it depends on how much you use the devices. I probably change the batteries in my Logitech keyboard and Logitech touchpad once a month.

But then again, I buy cheap batteries, and changing them is no biggie. I'd rather change batteries than have cords running across my living room floor 15 feet to where my computer and monitor are.

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It really depends on how hard you are pressing the keys. Each key on a wireless keyboard has a transmitter that sends out a signal when the key is pressed. Holding it too long or pressing too hard can increase the signal strength to the point where the FBI van outside your house can listen in. Solutions are to type softly or wrap the keyboard in aluminum.

Source: Internet

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Technically yes, they are banned on all MOD sites because of this possibility, but realistically I'd say no

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Are you constantly moving your keyboard around? Or is that wire so horrid of a thing that it's worth it to keep replacing batteries for it and introduce a potential security risk?

I used wireless mice for several years, and while they do have their advantages, I eventually got tired of worrying about batteries and went back to a wired mouse.

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I use a wireless keyboard at work and think it's pretty cool. I was thinking of getting one for my desktop computer at home, but my friend was telling me that they're a security risk because since they're wireless, someone can hack into your keyboard and can know what you're typing. So if you type something personal like a CC# or SS#, then they can obtain that information.

Is this true? Is it unsafe for me to buy a wireless keyboard for my computer at home?

the person would have to have the biggest attena ... be very good and encryptions and still be very close... the range of a wireless usb stick is about 5 meters..the key board also has about 5ms ... that 10 ms of range you have with a keyboard someone would have to be very very close and have the right kind of connection to it... its all if and buts I wouldnt worry about it

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Okay, the tell the truth, my keyboard was a Logitech. It didn't use Bluetooth, but instead had it's own (Logitech) protocol. In this case, a Google search of the model number confirmed data being transmitted was not encrypted. And yes, the range was easily 10 meters plus. I switched back to wired soon after. This was over four years ago BTW. I presume the times have changed in relation to wireless keyboards/Bluetooth/encryption...

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the person would have to have the biggest attena ... be very good and encryptions and still be very close... the range of a wireless usb stick is about 5 meters..the key board also has about 5ms ... that 10 ms of range you have with a keyboard someone would have to be very very close and have the right kind of connection to it... its all if and buts I wouldnt worry about it

I was gonna say. I have trouble getting signal on my couch. If someone was intercepting my keystrokes, they'd have to be sitting next to me. :laugh:

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