University researchers have delivered unauthorized commands to digital assistants like Alexa, Google Assistant, Facebook Portal and Siri using laser beams. The microphones in devices like smart speakers, mobile phones and tablets convert sound into electrical signals, but what the researchers found was that the mics react to light aimed directly at them, too. “By modulating an electrical signal in the intensity of a light beam, attackers can trick microphones into producing electrical signals as if they are receiving genuine audio,” they wrote.
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