Your Building’s RFID Access Tags Might Be Really Insecure

[Gabe Schuyler] had a frustrating problem when it came to getting into his building’s garage. The RFID access system meant he had to remove his gloves while sitting on his motorcycle to fish out the keytag for entry. He decided to whip up a better solution with less fuss.

His initial plan was to duplicate the keytag and to sew one into his gloves. Purchasing a 125 KHz RFID tag duplicator off eBay, he was able to quickly copy the tag, and create one that worked with his garage’s entry system. While the duplicate tags worked well, they were still too big to easily fit into a glove. Attempts to create a duplicate with a smaller tag failed, too. Eventually, [Gabe] turned up a ring complete with a compatible RFID chip, and was able to duplicate his entry tag onto that. Now, by wearing the ring, he can enter his garage and building with a simple wave of the hand, gloves on or off.

Of course, duplicating an RFID tag is no major hack. As per [Gabe]’s Shmoocon talk on the topic, however, it shows that many buildings are using completely insecure RFID access methods with little to no security whatsoever. Anyone that found an access tag lying on the ground could easily replicate as many as they wanted and enter the building unimpeded. It also bears noting that you can snoop RFID cards from further away than you might expect.