Who built this iPhone charging cable that can hijack a computer?

Answer: It wasn’t Apple, even though it sure looks like it.

by / October 1, 2019
Serbian authorities, working with the FBI, made an arrest this week of a suspected member of The Dark Overlord, a major cybercrime gang that has hacked dozens of U.S. medical offices and schools. (Ivan Kruk/Dreamstime/TNS) TNS

Security researcher Mike Grover has built a lightning charging cable for iPhones that has a sinister twist — when plugged into a computer, it can be used by a remote hacker to infiltrate said computer. And it looks a whole lot like Apple’s standard charging cables.

Grover’s device works by creating a wireless hot spot when plugged into a computer, which a hacker can then connect to remotely. Using that connection, the nefarious actor would be able to give the computer commands or control certain parts of it.

“It’s like being able to sit at the keyboard and mouse of the victim but without actually being there,” said Grover, who hopes the cable will serve as a reminder to consumers and security researchers that anything we are plugging into our computers could be dangerous. He is even selling the cable for use in security testing, hoping that it will encourage researchers to more often consider cyberattacks that come from USB devices. Considering how often the average consumer uses USB devices on a day-to-day basis, he has a good point.

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