Feeds

US company offers Wi-Fi-proof paint

Tinfoil-hat brigade rejoices

Reducing security risks from open source software

An American company says it has successfully tested wireless-blocking paint. EM-SEC Technologies, in a release last week, said its "Coating Solution", applied to a test facility, had successfully protected "wireless devices and other electronic equipment".

According to the company, "a one-time application of the coating creates an 'electromagnetic fortress' by preventing airborne hackers from intercepting signals".

EM-SEC reckon this would be useful for corporate offices, boardrooms, server and computer rooms, and R&D labs. It seems that wireless nets can be operated without trouble inside a painted building or room.

This latest launch by EM-SEC is an attempt to move into corporate security. Previously, the company has dealt more with government and military customers, earning some impressive validations. Its website claims that the coatings have been checked out by various groups including Sandia Labs and the Naval Surface Warfare Centre Crane Division (NSW-Crane develops and tests technology for the terribly-secret-yet-famous Navy SEAL special forces).

Perhaps even more significantly, the RF-proof paint is approved as a TEMPEST countermeasure by the US National Security Agency (NSA). Before wardrivers and Wi-Fi were ever heard of, security types were warning about TEMPEST vulns, where attackers sniff the emissions from kit which isn't even meant to communicate wirelessly. Depending on competence, equipment, and proximity TEMPEST attackers can supposedly lift info directly from unshielded electronics.

Of course, most black hats in the commercial world aren't in this league, and indeed it could be said that many corporate Wi-Fi users might do better to enable their built-in encryption than redecorate the office with radio-proof paint. Especially if they want to use their mobile phones, or look out of the window now and then.

Still, products like this seem bound to find a wide market. Cinemas or theatres might use such tech to cut off mobile phones, avoiding the legal issues around jamming.

Famous Wi-Fi-allergic latin teacher Michael Bevington might wish to paint his house or classroom with EM-SEC paint. Mobile mast antis could buy the product for use at home.

And, if EM-SEC could develop a body-paint version of the technology, they would no doubt have the tinfoil-hat tendency queuing round the block. Although they could face stiff competition in this latter arena from Clarins, which already markets an allegedly electromagnetism-proof anti-ageing cream. Clarins lacks the crucial NSA and Navy-SEAL endorsements, however, choosing instead to partner with ladies-smellies and designer togs purveyor Thierry Mugler.

One does note that EM-SEC already has RF-proof fabric at its disposal in addition to paint, offering a range of nifty laptop bags, phone holsters, etc. Could a collection of stylish headgear for the tinfoil-clad be on the cards? ®

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Microsoft: You NEED bad passwords and should re-use them a lot
Dirty QWERTY a perfect P@ssword1 for garbage websites
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
NUDE SNAPS AGENCY: NSA bods love 'showing off your saucy selfies'
Swapping other people's sexts is a fringe benefit, says Snowden
Own a Cisco modem or wireless gateway? It might be owned by someone else, too
Remote code exec in HTTP server hands kit to bad guys
British data cops: We need greater powers and more money
You want data butt kicking, we need bigger boots - ICO
Crooks fling banking Trojan at Japanese smut site fans
Wait - they're doing online banking with an unpatched Windows PC?
NIST told to grow a pair and kick NSA to the curb
Lrn2crypto, oversight panel tells US govt's algorithm bods
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.