Schneier on Security
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June 12, 2006
Wireless Surveillance Camera Detector
Posted on June 12, 2006 at 7:12 AM
• 29 Comments
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I really wonder how useful this would be. Most of the cameras I've seen are wired, and the wireless ones I know of (DC police cameras) use what look like very directional antennas.
And those wireless police ones aren't likely to be either analog or unencrypted.
This is mainly useful for finding x10 spycams.
Hmm, my wireless cameras require an Active X client be installed on the PC end. This thing may pick up the signal, but I doubt it would display anything.
Nice that you can actually see what the camera is seeing... unless it's out of bandrange and encrypted. Well.. for common wireless cams it perfect yes. Also costly if i may say.
BTW when we speak about something wireless:
" China Frustrated In Encryption Talks"
"According to an AP article, the Chinese are pushing for the encryption standard called WAPI. It's not going so well, as the majority of countries are taking the IEEE standard 802.11i. From the article: 'An international dispute over a wireless computing standard took a bitter turn this past week with the Chinese delegation walking out of a global meeting to discuss the technology. The delegation's walkout from Wednesday's opening of a two-day meeting in the Czech Republic escalated an already rancorous struggle by China to gain international acceptance for its homegrown encryption technology known as WAPI. It follows Chinese accusations that a U.S.-based standards body used underhanded tactics to prevent global approval of WAPI.'"
Hmmm.. I presume it will pick up some cameras behind closed walls. So you can watch inside the police station, bank, brothel or whatever!
Not bad for shoplifting either.
Please excuse the immoral thoughts. It seems to be just one more security threat to worry about.
I'm kind of surprised that someone who develops camera for security purposes forgot the basics of encrypting their output!
Or maybe they didn't forget, but the customers didn't want it...yet...at least.
Axis Cameras? If so, the control is only for IE. Firefox can view the streams directly. Either the motion jpeg or the mpeg ones.
Depending on the type of "security" a camera's used for, I don't see the advantage of encryption. Especially given the high processor load just encoding video is, let alone encrypting the encoded video.
Surveillance of public spaces? That's an iffy argument. It's already publicly viewable, so why bother encrypting? Same goes for most store-owners putting cameras out in their stores. The only real use I could see is customers/employees trying to locate the blind-spots for exploitation.
Surveillance of spaces behind closed doors, with limited/secured access is different. But I'd want to be running wired cameras for that, anyway.
A closed network is a very nice security measure.
My wireless is a Linksys. Only works with IE and Active X, which is a major complaint about it. The other is a wired Panasonic, but it's hooked to a wireless bridge. Gives the same functionality. But you're right, the Panasonic can be viewed in Firefox with no plugin. Still, you need the password.
How soon do you think the price of this tech will come down?
For about US $350 you can get an Icom R-3 scanner that picks up video on multiple bands and audio on just about every band except blocked mobile and police freqs. (Outside of the US, you can get an unblocked model.)
I suspect this device detects the type of camera one finds on ebay, by searching for "spy camera". These operate in (I believe) the 2.4GHz unlicensed area of the spectrum, by simply modulating composite video; the cost can be in the region of $20. Both the modulator and demodulator are entirely analog. They are unencrypted because encryption would complicate the design very much, (i.e. by adding a video digitisation stage) making them cost more than $20 (=price including shipping from the far east).
The receivers for said cameras typically have a tuning knob one can rotate until an adequate picture is acquired. Clearly, this is not very useful for scanning. This system is probably a digital system for achieving the same thing, with an option to auto-scan and a natty built-in screen.
Cool spy gift ideas for him???? What about us girl-spy wannabees?????? ;-)
this one also gets the camera with wires, encrypted or not. :) and cost 99$. The idea of this one is far better, simpler and portable. Most camera's do have wires to feed them power, but also to rout the camstream. This device only detects them, through the simple reflection of the camera lens (so simple, and effective) which is enough to bust the thing when it's found. Good cheap alternative for people who are in dressingrooms all the time and want to ensure their privacy, without walking with high-end spystuff i fugure.
This i would buy to gadget around i guess.
They're showing a scanning range of 900Mhz-2.4Ghz, and they claim that they autoswitch between NTSC/PAL and CCIR/EIA formats. However, I'm automatically leery of RF gear that doesn't have a manufactuer's name on it.
Finally, I wonder how useful this is -- inside, at least, the camera are likely to be wired, not wireless.
Can anybody comment on how well the $99 "lens reflection" model works? That would be fine against any C-mount camera, but some cameras have lenses that are only a millimeter or so. Others have pinhole lenses (no optics). Those are the ones that I would worry about.
I am not saying that the $99 model wouldn't work. I just would rather have hear from somebody with 1st hand experience before I would buy.
The lens reflection model works well if you know what and where you should be looking. I calculated that the viewing range of the camera is about 30 degrees so you dont have alot of leeway. Also, it wouldn't work with a pinhole camera--it reflects the optic lens which the pinhole camera does not have. It's a great concept and a decent implementation--I'm awaiting for them to refine the idea.
I'm not sure if anyone has noticed or mentioned this before, but I think it's worth noting, and somewhat on topic. I have a wireless network, and I have an analog wireless video camera that runs on 2.4 GHz. I've noticed that when I turn on the camera it completely knocks out my wireless network (no big shock there...)
So: A) I'm wondering if a wireless network finder would detect a 2.4 GHz wireless camera (or at least could be modded to), B) It would appear that wireless network interruption is a definite sign there may be a 2.4 GHz analog camera nearby, and C) I think it's worth noting that a 2.4 GHz wireless video camera system seems to act as a wireless network denial of service device, and at a fairly significant distance.
Just a little food for thought.
Look at the specks for the "PEN" -wireless tracker.
Perfect gift for that VIP or Lawyer that would like to remain discreet
Detectable distance up to 10 Feet
500 MHz to 3 GHz Detectable Frequency
Red LED flash
PDA Stylus for touch screen devices
Functioning ball point pen
Powered by 2 3V DC, LR44 Button Cell Batteries, included
Has anyone seen an optical device that "sees" lenses in cameras and spotting scopes, binoculars, etc? I saw the brochure years back, I think from the UK, but when you look at surrounding areas and into windows, etc., any lenses/optics will show up as bright round spots. Im assuming maybe a video camera with some kind of filtering built into the dsp softwarez????
Hey everyone, I'm Chris, a grad student in the Department of Media Study at the University at Buffalo. I am writing to request some help with a project that I'm attempting to embark on.
I have an idea to create a device that will alert someone of the presence of wireless video transmissions on the 2.4 gHz band. Im basically attempting to create a device that will detect surveillance cameras and then alert you of its presence. The alert is experienced in the sensation of a bracelet that will SQUEEZE your arm.
I'm looking for someone who has some knowledge to get me going in the right direction. I saw some information about this here : http://revision3.com/systm/warspyingbox/ however I am not attempting to SEE the video transmission, just detect it and alert someone of its presence.
Can anyone think of a good place to start with this? I have SOME technical knowledge of soldering and electronics - I have built circuits before, but its not my strongpoint. I am aware that there are some devices that do this already (they vibrate) however I am looking to build my own from the ground up and get it working with a micro controller to get the squeeze effect that Im looking for.
I hope this might interest some of you! It seems like it could be fun to make something like this.
Thanks for taking the time to read this and for your consideration - I'm gonna take a look around the forums a bit!
Just a thought here. These wireless camera detectors detect at either 900 megahertz,1.4 and up to 2.4 ghz. What about the 5.8 ghz range? Can one modify the present wireless video camera detectors to include this higher range? Please let me know. Any and all responses would be apprectiated.
Hi, im looking for a camera detector. My question is can they detect the bluetooth style cameras? If not wat can.basiclly i need one to detect body bugs,body cameras,car bugs, an car cameras
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