Experts analyzed and presented new method of stealing data through air gap computers. This method is based on small changes in the brightness settings of an LCD screen. Changes are not visible to the eye, but can be recognized by video feeds using algorithmic methods. Scientists have described this original method of data theft, but stressed that there is no serious cause for concern as it is not an attack that anyone can easily achieve. It is designed for air gap settings where the computers are kept separate without access to the internet.
Air gap computers are commonly used in government systems or business networks that store highly confidential documents and personal information from customers. Experienced and creative hackers can find ways to infect these systems. For example, you can use an attached USB that is connected to them. However, stealing data from computers with air gaps is a difficult task. Scientists in Israel have attempted this. In recent years, they have been exploring ways to extract data from previously infected computers with air gaps.
The Brightness Attack Is Extremely Slow
However, exporting data in this way is extremely slow. In fact, it is the slowest technique of data theft from air gap computers that has never been introduced. However, it can be effective if the attacker wants to steal a very small amount of data. An encryption key for example. Certainly not a suitable method to steal a lot of data.
Data from the infected computer is obtained by encrypting the information and transmitting it using changes in screen brightness in a sequential pattern very similar to how the code works. The only other requirement for this is that a camera points to the device display that can either record or stream the transmitted pattern. Once the pattern has been received, it can be converted back into meaningful data.