Your Shoes Don't Just Stink- Nike Shoes Plus IPOD Kit Will LET OTHERS STALK YOU! Somervell County Salon-Glen Rose, Rainbow, Nemo, Glass....Texas


Your Shoes Don't Just Stink- Nike Shoes Plus IPOD Kit Will LET OTHERS STALK YOU!

14 December 2006 at 12:03:46 AM

Geez. You thought you were just out running and trying to keep track yourself of how far you run,  and how much time it took to do it. And how nice to have those expensive Nike shoes with an IPod Sport Kit-that is ALSO equipped with RFID tags.

Turns out that researchers very easily created a surveillance device for around $250 and not only tracked people by their Nikes but were able to integrate it into google maps... so that they could tell WHERE that person was. Creepy.

Before I give some quotes from the research paper that discussed this, better think about it. RFID is going to be in EVERY ITEM, it has a unique serial number, unlike a bar code, that can tell exactly who YOU are. In other words, you could have two people with the same brand of NIKE shoes but each NIKE pair will have a unique serial number... that identifies the unique person wearing them. And it isn't just shoes, it's EVERYTHING. Is this a stalker's paradise or what?

Stalking. A malicious person could exploit the Nike+iPod’s design and the sensor’s wide broadcast radius for stalking purposes. In our first example scenario, Alice is a college student who regularly wears her Nike+ shoes while walk- ing between home, class, the library, the student union, the gym, and her friends’ homes. Her ex-boyfriend, Marvin, is unable to come to terms with their separation and still wishes to have some interaction with her. If Marvin places specially-crafted devices (a.k.a. nodes or Nike+iPod detec-tors) by each of the above-mentioned locations, then he can remotely detect exactly when Alice enters and leaves a par- ticular location (by detecting the unique identifier associated with Alice’s Nike+iPod sensor). Not only is simply collect- ing this information a potential violation of Alice’s privacy, but this information could also enable Marvin to perform some malicious action. At a minimum, Marvin could some- how “accidentally” find himself bumping into Alice at “ran- dom” places, as if by coincidence.

Prototype Surveillance System.

We implemented a prototype surveillance system, much like the one Marvin would deploy in the above scenario. Our surveillance sys- tem consists of multiple Nike+iPod detector nodes (e.g., a $109 gumstix with an attached $79 wifistix and a Nike+iPod receiver). When a node detects a broadcasting Nike+iPod sensor, the node knows that the sensor is nearby. The node then sends a message using WiFi to a central database; the message contains the location of the node (latitude and lon- gitude), the four-byte unique identifier for the Nike+iPod sensor, and the time the sensor was detected. The central database aggregates all the data from all the nodes and pub- lishes a GoogleMaps overlay showing the locations at which Nike+iPod sensors were recently detected. By looking at this website, Marvin can learn if Alice is near the library,

Go look at page 9 for a couple more examples of thieves or unethical organizations that would want to track their employees.

From Bruce Schnier -This is a great demonstration for anyone who is skeptical that RFID chips can be used to track people. It's a good example because the chips have no personal identifying information, yet can still be used to track people. As long as the chips have unique IDs, those IDs can be used for surveillance.

To me, the real significance of this work is how easy it was. The people who designed the Nike/iPod system put zero thought into security and privacy issues. Unless we enact some sort of broad law requiring companies to add security into these sorts of systems, companies will continue to produce devices that erode our privacy through new technologies. Not on purpose, not because they're evil -- just because it's easier to ignore the externality than to worry about it.

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