WATCH_DOGS was this year’s one of the biggest release in the gaming industry because of its very innovative hacking game-play(because it is the only thing that you can use to counter enemies as the shooting mechanics are uber shity with the worst mini map i have ever seen) . The game takes place in Chicago, the whole city runs on a central system that connects everything from mobiles to PCs to security cameras ( even steam pipelines under the roads ) so this system was named Ctos that players can hack into and literally control the city.
But things got interesting when i started to think about the hacks that we use in the game. Hacks that control traffic lights , ATM’s , security cameras etc. Can they be performed in real life?
Watch Dogs Hacking in Real Life
During my research I found out that it has been done (by 14 year old boys literally). These guys did nothing but searched for ATM on Google where they found out entire manuals of ATM’s they figured out how to start there operator mode and bingo you they had access to everything inside it . For ATMs running on windows xp its bad news as they can be hacked by sending just a text message with a malware just like WATCH_DOGS (use smart phone to screw the machine).
TRAFFIC LIGHT HACK
In a new study, a group of computer scientist at the University of Michigan revealed a major loop hole in wireless traffic lights. Using only a laptop and a wireless card running on the same frequency as that of the wireless traffic lights, took control of traffic lights of an area (they had the permission of the local authorities). These lights run on a computer based system using radio signals, their controllers that are found at every intersection operated like an unsecured router. These are rarely encrypted and use the same username and password,to top it all of those usernames and passwords are published in online manuals that are available to every one. The problem doesn’t just end here, the software used by these light doesn’t limit who can send commands to these lights, thus hackers can control them unobstructed
These lights can be hacked from a mile away while sitting in your car (no one will ever notice).
CREDIT CARD HACK
People who are getting new credit cards usually will get a card with a RFID( radio frequency identification).
Have you ever seen people just sliding(not swiping) there credit cards over a machine to do there transactions, it is very convenient but is has a dark side. Your cards are not protected by anything. What i am saying is that anyone with a homemade RFID scanner can just come near your pocket and scan it for your credit card and he will get all the info that he will need to make your life hell. As technology is getting better and better i suspect that one day our smart phones will carry RFID scanners in them, then just an app that can manipulate the scanner will do stuff like WATCH_DOGS.
In the game players too can access people’s credit card because they are the primary source of income to the player. We will have to wait until we can do that stuff with our mobile phones. But you can make a scanner at your home if you know how to, it will cost you only around a 100$.
In the game you can manipulate cars,helicopters etc. It also shows that how much connected to the world our personal cars have become. As cars become more and more connected to the crazy network that humans are creating. Last year two hackers Charlie Miller and Cris Valasek hacked the steering and brakes of Ford Escape(car) and Toyota Prius(car) using laptops connected to the cars. I guise it is only a matter of time until hackers would be able to do the same thing wirelessly. Just imagine someone else is controlling your car’s steering while you are sitting in your car thinking ” is my car possessed by some demon ” . If i told you how to do it would only have done you harm (because controlling your car with your laptop is not a very good idea) after all guys life’s not a game (or is it).
As i mentioned above i will never tell you the method of doing any of these hack(because i also don’t know) still if you find out how to do them, think about its consequences (because the traffic light hack can lead to a massive grid lock) also if you can help people protect themselves from any credit card skimmer you are saving a lot money from being turned into black money.
But enjoy the game anyway.