Wearable Technology: Are You Aware of the Vulnerabilities?

The Technology industry is advancing quicker than the consumers can keep up with it. Which is a great thing for the economy but not so much for the world of security. With all the new wearable gadgets that track things like number of steps and heartrate to your GPS location, there is no room for error when securing there devices from malicious eyes. The following are some popular devices and their associated vulnerabilities

Google Glass

Google Glass was one of the most sought after products before it came out. The idea was so new and fresh that it seemed impossible to be real. Well it was too good to be true, there were several things wrong with the device, starting with the fact that the camera could be easily hacked. Once hacked the feed was sold to advertising companies to select advertising based on what you looked at. Next is the Wi-Fi hijacking vulnerability, which is a terrible problem to have for a wearable device that you literally have to wear on your face. Now you can find Google Glass for half the price on eBay in full abundance.


One of the most popular wearable devices for people interested in their health and fitness, the Fitbit does come with a security flaw that could lead you elsewhere for a new device. Now Fitbit claims that it stores customer information fully encrypted on the device, which it does. The problem lies with the method of connecting. The Bluetooth signal used to connect to your phone or computer is left wide open for anyone to connect. This vulnerability allows anyone with the know-how and within Bluetooth connecting distance to upload malware to the device in under 10 seconds.[1] Once this process has been initiated the device will remain infected even after a factory reset. Also once you plug your Fitbit into your computer to upload your stats, you have now just infected your PC as well. Don’t go selling your Fitbit just yet, even though this has the potential to be very serious, there hasn’t been very many cases of this vulnerability. It is always a best practice to keep aware of who is around you and where you leave your Fitbit when you are not wearing it.

Garmin Vivosmart

Out of all the fitness tracking smart wearables, the Garmin Vivosmart is absolutely the worst one. Each device on the market (Apple watch, Fitbit, Jawbone, etc.) have the same three security features that they should account for. Encrypting the user data that is stored on the device, making the device flexible but tamper proof (to prevent people re-conditioning them for other purposes) and lastly protecting the identification of the user. Garmin doesn’t meet any of the criteria what so ever. They simply made a cool looking device that has all the fitness features but none of the security ones. Apple watch is on top with all three areas covered. The main issues here is that these companies are putting out insecure devices because people are letting them. The industry is booming and wearable technology is in high demand. The goal for these companies is get the device out and troubleshoot later. [2]


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[1] http://www.engadget.com/2015/10/21/fitbit-tracker-bluetooth-vulnerability/

[2] http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/fitness-trackers-monitoring-users-1.3428817

Vulnerabilities, hacking, Mobile Devices, wearables

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