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This iPhone case makes it easier than ever for thieves to steal your ATM PIN

Published Sep 1st, 2014 2:45PM EDT
iPhone Flir One Case ATM

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In light of this weekend’s massive celebrity photo leak, mobile security is bound to be a major topic of discussion in the weeks to come. How can we keep our private data safe if actors and actresses whose lives often revolve around keeping things private are this vulnerable? With the amount of information we store on our phones, in our email, in cloud storage, we’re always going to be at risk, but there are ways that hackers can get private data from us without accessing any of our devices.

At the beginning of the year, thermal imaging company FLIR announced the FLIR One, an iPhone 5 and iPhone 5s-compatible case with a infrared camera. Although there are plenty of legitimate uses for an infrared camera, there are some unsavory ones as well, including the ability to steal someone’s ATM PIN by detecting the heat signature on the keypad immediately after it has been used.

Fortunately, Youtuber Mark Rober is here to show us an easy way to prevent this frightening new trick. After you swipe your credit card, simply rest a finger or two on other buttons while you type in your code. This leaves a signature that even the savviest FLIR One user won’t be able to pick up on.

Another decent prevention method: the FLIR One case costs $350. Until the technology is more affordable, this shouldn’t become a widespread issue.

Watch the video below for a more detailed explanation of how thermal imaging works.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.