Get In Touch

Latest News

Visit Our Blog
20 Mar 2019

Your body is your internet — and now it can’t be hacked



Researchers have protected your pacemaker, other medical tech from remote hacks before they happen.

Someone could hack into your pacemaker or insulin pump and potentially kill you, just by intercepting and analyzing wireless signals. This hasn’t happened in real life yet, but researchers have been demonstrating for at least a decade that it’s possible.

Before the first crime happens, Purdue University engineers have tightened security on the “internet of body.” Now, the network you didn’t know you had is only accessible by you and your devices, thanks to technology that keeps communication signals within the body itself.

The work appears in the journal Scientific Reports. Study authors include Shreyas Sen, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at Purdue, and his students, Debayan Das, Shovan Maity and Baibhab Chatterjee.

“We’re connecting more and more devices to the human body network, from smart watches and fitness trackers to head-mounted virtual reality displays,” said Sen, who specializes in sensing and communication systems.

“The challenge has not only been keeping this communication within the body so that no one can intercept it, but also getting higher bandwidth and less battery consumption,” he said.

Body fluids carry electrical signals very well. So far, so-called “body area networks” have used Bluetooth technology to send signals on and around the body. These electromagnetic waves can be picked up within at least a 10-meter radius of a person.

Sen’s team has demonstrated a way for human body communication to occur more securely — not going beyond a centimeter off the skin and using 100 times less energy than traditional Bluetooth communication.

This is possible through a device that couples signals in the electro-quasistatic range, which is much lower on the electromagnetic spectrum. Sen’s group is working with government and industry to incorporate this device into a dust-sized integrated circuit.

A YouTube video is available at https://youtu.be/NHqfT1vIe6E.

Through a prototype watch, a person can receive a signal from anywhere on the body, from the ears all the way down to the toes. The thickness of your skin or hair also doesn’t really make a difference in how well you carry the signal, Sen says.

The idea would be to create a way for doctors to reprogram medical devices without invasive surgery. The technology would also help streamline the advent of closed-loop bioelectronic medicine — in which wearable or implantable medical devices function as drugs, but without the side effects — and high-speed brain imaging for neuroscience applications.

“We show for the first time a physical understanding of the security properties of human body communication to enable a covert body area network, so that no one can snoop important information,” Sen said.

Story Source:

Materials provided by Purdue University. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

Purdue University. “Your body is your internet — and now it can’t be hacked: Researchers have protected your pacemaker, other medical tech from remote hacks before they happen.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 March 2019. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/03/190312151233.htm>.

Microtechs 24x7x365 White Label support service

Located in Guildford, Surrey, Our UK based support team provides a completely white labelled service to enhance your existing help desk team. We partner with over 90 IT, Telecoms, Wi-Fi and Software developers, providing specialist 1st and 2nd line technical support teams to work with you. A great solution for increasing demand for support, especially if outside of normal business hours.

You may ask yourself:

               How can I offer support 24/7 without the stress & cost of recruiting and training?
               How can I improve my bottom line?
               How can I free up my team’s time, to enable us to grow the business?

Microtechs can help.

Here why;

  • *     Office hours or 24/7
  • *     UK based from Guildford, Surrey
  • *     1st & 2nd line / NOC and incident management capabilities
  • *     Ability to learn bespoke applications
  • *     All white labelled to your brand
  • *     25-50% reduction in overheads
  • *     Pricing from £500 per month
  • *     Sole traders through to enterprise companies supported

Here’s what our customers have said;

“Using Microtechs to extend the helpdesk capabilities for our organisation has been a very worthwhile venture for us. The transition was very easy and simple and we have found the Microtechs staff to be both knowledgeable and professional; in their dealings with our clients.”

“My customers receive a polite service and their issues are dealt with quickly and professionally. In short Microtechs provide a courteous, effective and cost-efficient service that enables me to offer my customers 24/7 support without the associated expense.”

Extended…we are offering 10% discount on our monthly fees for new customers joining before the end of June 2019. (excludes entry tiers)

It would be great to have a chat with you and understand a little about your business, even if you are not quite ready to outsource.

Call me on 01483 407417.





More About Us