Hackers have figured out all kinds of ways to spy on our activities, but short of law enforcement agencies tapping your phone, it’s not very common to hear about our phone calls being eavesdropped on.
That being said, that could change in the future as researchers from the University of Dayton, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Rutgers University, Texas A&M University, and Temple University have actually devised a new method of eavesdropping on phone conversations with a system called EarSpy.
This wasn’t achieved through your typical means like bugging your phone or installing malware that can spy on you. Rather, it uses motion sensors which have been modified to pick up on data coming from your phone’s earpiece and the phone’s accelerometer. This seems to only work on devices that have stereo speakers and it was tested on phones like the OnePlus 7T and the OnePlus 9.
By picking up on the reverberations and using a spectrogram, the researchers were able to identify the gender of the speaker and the actual conversation. The researchers also make a rather bold claim that EarSpy has a 92% accuracy rate on being able to detect the person’s identity too.
According to the researchers, they are recommending that smartphone makers should move the position of the motion sensors away from other components that could generate vibrations, and also reduce the sound pressure during a call. That being said, the likelihood of you being targeted by such a hack could be rather small, so it’s not something you probably need to be worried about, but it’s good to be aware anyway.
Source: Android Police