The Scariest Hacks from Black Hat and Defcon

Although [HAD] is generally all about legal hacking, this list of demonstrated hacks could be used for the dark side as well. Hopefully by demonstrating hacks like this, most people can be more aware of how they use their information. Computer security experts also have a chance to hone their skills and see where potential vulnerabilities lie.

Some of the highlights from this article include hacking a Siemens S7 PLC, which can be used for factory automation, a “hacker drone” that we’ve featured before, and a method to deduce someone’s social security number from personal photos on social networking sites.  Also scary is a method to shut down certain personal insulin pumps.  Although serious in itself, one would hope that other life preserving devices would be adequately protected against intrusion.

One hack that seems like it could have interesting uses in the legal-hacking world is the idea of VoIP botnet control. Although “botnet control” obviously implies illegal use, controlling a computer with voice or touchtones can and does have many legal uses.

“Extrem Konsolen Modding”

Not to be outdone by their North American counterparts, these German-speaking hackers have come up with a truly unique console mod. Although modding one system may be OK for most, the builders of this console decided to combine three systems into one clear plastic box. A stripped down Xbox360, Playstation3, and Nintendo Wii were all put together to form this “Extrem” system.

The build style should be very appealing to those interested in video game hardware. Combining the look of a tower PC with a clear plastic allows one to see all components in action. Since the box is lit up with electroluminescent lighting, one is able to show off this system in the day or at night. [Read more...]

High Voltage: Build your own 84 kV lightning stick

There’s a proverb that says ‘Speak softly and carry a big stick’. Now that stick can come in a high-voltage form factor. The device above, which reminds us of a side-handled baton with a coke can stuck on the end, is a portable Van de Graaff generator.

Although debated in the comments, the creator of this hack claims you can shock someone with 84 kV of electricity using the device. Of course as a weapon it’s lacking since we’re talking about static electricity; the voltage can be through the roof but the current is extremely low. Despite that, there are some fun things you can do with them. The video after the break show it throwing off sparks with the lights dimmed. [Yardleydobon] also includes a few other tricks at the end of his tutorial. He makes a set of Franklin Bells using two more soda cans with the aluminum tab from one suspended in between them. As he charges it up, the tab dances back and forth, ringing the ‘bells’ it runs into. Once they are charged, the ringing can be restarted by discharging just one of the cans.

 

[Read more...]

All your I/O pins belong to ArduinoDashboard

arduino_dashboard

So if you’re knee deep in an Arduino-based project and you want to constantly monitor all of the micro’s pins, what’s the best way to go about it? [Jonathan Clark] from LVL1 in Louisville was looking to keep a closer eye on his board and whipped up an application he calls ArduinoDashboard.

Programmed in Processing, the application gives you a look at all of your Arduino board’s analog and digital pins in a simple to use display. All that’s required to run the application is a bit of code inserted at the top of your sketch, which can be called anywhere in your program’s loop. Once the code snipped is called, all of the board’s pins are read and the data is sent to your PC.

ArduinoDashboard is still very much in beta at the moment, but it looks to be stable enough for everyday use. [Jonathan] has plenty of improvements and new features in mind, so be sure to check back often to see what’s changed.

[via Adafruit Blog]

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