Scientists use Freely available Headset to get out of your Brain your Bank Account PIN

Scientists have successfully used Freely available cheap Gaming Headset to get information out of Human Brain!

This is not from some futuristic Sci-Fi Steven Spielberg movie; but a group of researchers from the University of California, University of Oxford and University of Geneva, today demonstrated how they can 'hack' someone's brain to find out their pin number - using a cheap headset.

Things the Researchers used in their "Brain Hack" Demonstration:

Researchers used a cheap headset called an Emotive, a freely available headset often used in gaming -- the headset allows users to interact with their computers by thought, available online for £190 (£299) for their research, and human volunteers to demonstrate their research.

The Result:

The Researchers managed to accurately guess pin numbers (Bank, and other logins) and even where someone lives.

How the Researchers retrieve the information they were looking for:

The Researchers made humans, with the headset on, sit in front of a computer screen and showed them images of banks, people, and PIN numbers. According to Ivan Martinovic, a member of the faculty in the department of computer science at Oxford, these emotive headsets (responding to human emotions taking place in the brain)have access to the wearer's raw EEG [electroencephalography, or electrical brain signal] data, and that contains certain neurological phenomena triggered by subconscious activities.

The researchers then looked for the regions in brain, which showed a spike in a certain type of brain activity, whenever the person saw some bank, or home.

There researchers then used that trigger to watch for numbers a person recognised.

The Researchers particularly tracked the readings coming off of the brain, specifically a signal known as P300. The P300 signal is used by the brain when a person recognizes something meaningful, such as someone or something they interact with on a regular basis. The electrical signal is released by the brain around 300 milliseconds after recognition occurs, hence its name. For instance, when the computer screen flashed the picture of US President Barack Obama, the P300 signal was  released.

Should you fear?

Should you fear for your privacy and security of your Bank PIN?

Not now. But if the demonstration is a glimpse of the future, then it can be said that such technology will be there in future, in a well packaged and efficient shape. This is not an impossibility, as right now, a Windows PC user is already controlling his PC with his brain.

How successful were the researchers in taking out sensitive and other information from the Human Brain:

The team found they could find a person's home 60% of the time with a one in ten chance, and had a 40% chance of recognising the first number of a PIN number. But, in the Research Paper the scientists state that 'the P300 can be used as a discriminative feature in detecting whether or not the relevant information is stored in the subject’s memory.

The Researchers are hopeful that the P300 linked research can ably assist the law enforcement agencies efficiently interrogate the criminal and take out crucial information from them.

BTW, get rid off the habit of memorising Bank Account Pins and other passwords. There are many bright guys out there (these researchers included :( ) --------

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