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Wed Jul 26, 2017, 10:54 PM

Wired: A 'Locked' Smart Gun Can Be Fired With Just $15 Worth of Magnets

https://www.wired.com/story/smart-gun-fire-magnets/



A 'Locked' Smart Gun Can Be Fired With Just $15 Worth of Magnets

For gun control advocates, a "smart" gun that only its owner can fire has promised an elusive ideal: If your phone or PC can remain locked until you prove your identity, why not your lethal weapon? Now, for the first time, a skilled hacker has taken a deep look into the security mechanisms of one leading example of those authenticated firearms. He's found that if smart guns are going to become a reality, they'll need to be smarter than this one.

At the Defcon hacker conference later this week, a hacker who goes by the pseudonym Plore plans to show off a series of critical vulnerabilities he found in the Armatix IP1, a smart gun whose German manufacturer Armatix has claimed its electronic security measures will "usher in a new era of gun safety." Plore discovered, and demonstrated to WIRED at a remote Colorado firing range, that he could hack the gun with a disturbing variety of techniques, all captured in the video above...

...The IP1 purports to limit who can fire it by requiring that the shooter wear a special Armatix watch. If the gun and the watch can't connect via a short-range radio signal that extends just a few inches, the gun won't fire. That's the idea, anyway. But Plore showed that he can extend the range of the watch's radio signal, allowing anyone to fire the gun when it's more than ten feet away. He can jam the gun's radio signals to prevent its owner from firing itóeven when the watch is inches away and connected. And most disturbingly, he can mechanically disable the gun's locking mechanism by placing some cheap magnets alongside its barrel, firing the gun at will even when the watch is completely absent.

Plore notes that unlike many gun owners, he's not opposed to the principle of a gun with added layers of electronic authentication. But he says the politicized debate over smart guns hasn't examined the far more basic question of whether they actually provide the security they promise. "If you buy one of these weapons thinking itíll be safer, it should be," Plore says. "In this case, it was so easily defeated, in so many ways, that it really failed to live up to its side of that bargain...Misplaced trust is worse than no trust at all."


A stack of $15 worth of magnets from Amazon? Meh.

I'd venture to say a rare-earth magnet salvaged from an old hard drive would work just as well-
those suckers are strong, and also make great refrigerator magnets...

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Reply Wired: A 'Locked' Smart Gun Can Be Fired With Just $15 Worth of Magnets (Original post)
friendly_iconoclast Jul 2017 OP
AJT Jul 2017 #1
friendly_iconoclast Jul 2017 #5
ExciteBike66 Jul 2017 #2
flotsam Jul 2017 #3
friendly_iconoclast Jul 2017 #4
needledriver Jul 2017 #6
friendly_iconoclast Jul 2017 #7
Straw Man Jul 2017 #8
jimmy the one Aug 2017 #9
friendly_iconoclast Aug 2017 #10

Response to friendly_iconoclast (Original post)

Wed Jul 26, 2017, 11:09 PM

1. It would still help prevent accidental discharge by child who got a hold of it, right?

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Response to AJT (Reply #1)

Thu Jul 27, 2017, 01:26 PM

5. Child safety would be better (and less expensively) served by secure storage

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Response to friendly_iconoclast (Original post)

Thu Jul 27, 2017, 04:45 AM

2. Research continues apace...

Perhaps the relevant portions of the locking mechanism can be made out of metals that do not react to magnets.

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Response to friendly_iconoclast (Original post)

Thu Jul 27, 2017, 09:20 AM

3. So all the perp has to do

is distract the cop for 10 seconds or so while he strategically places magnets and then, if he can wrassle the gun away, he can shoot the cop.... Whew-scary!!!

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Response to flotsam (Reply #3)

Thu Jul 27, 2017, 01:23 PM

4. Why would a cop be using this buggy POS? Also, a perp can jam these in one of several ways...

...as noted in the linked article. They can also be jammed inadvertently:

...An assailant who knew his intended victim carried an Armatix handgun could, then, simply use the transmitter to disarm him or her. But Plore warns that even a nearby cordless phone could trigger the interference. "Imagine your gun wonít fire because somebodyís grandmother is blabbing on a cordless phone," Plore says...

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Response to flotsam (Reply #3)

Thu Jul 27, 2017, 01:26 PM

6. Or perp with electronic gun jamming gizmo

can make it so a cop can't fire his gun at all.

Or a perp can steal an electronically "locked" gun, disable the lock with magnets at their leisure, and use the gun at will.

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Response to needledriver (Reply #6)

Thu Jul 27, 2017, 03:17 PM

7. Or perp with some mechanical skills could simply remove the locking bolt and fire at will

This reminds me of a few years back when the gun control fad de jour was a demand for mandatory
microstamping of cartridge cases. That faded away when it was pointed out that mandatory microstamping
was a) easily defeated by simple means, b) ineffectual, and c)corporate welfare for the patent holder
of the technology

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Response to flotsam (Reply #3)

Fri Jul 28, 2017, 02:36 AM

8. No need to worry.

So all the perp has to do

is distract the cop for 10 seconds or so while he strategically places magnets and then, if he can wrassle the gun away, he can shoot the cop.... Whew-scary!!!

All the proposed legislation mandating smart guns has been written to exempt police from the requirement.

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Response to friendly_iconoclast (Original post)

Tue Aug 8, 2017, 09:38 AM

9. playing chicken with a jammer

Armatix IP1, a smart gun ... Plore showed that he can extend the range of the watch's radio signal, allowing anyone to fire the gun when it's more than ten feet away.
He can jam the gun's radio signals to prevent its owner from firing itóeven when the watch is inches away and connected.
And most disturbingly, he can mechanically disable the gun's locking mechanism by placing some cheap magnets alongside its barrel, firing the gun at will even when the watch is completely absent.


This is your argument that smart guns are unreliable? or more unreliable than a regular gun? because smart guns can be defeated using a particular sophisticated technology? which overrides kids flipping a safety?
Is the perp supposed to carry this jamming mechanism on his person, waiting for the moment to arrive when he encounters someone with an armatix IP1? or is a universal gizmo in the offing? 'get your gun jammer quick before democrats ban em'.

And then, the perp's so confident he's degunned the gun he does what? rob & steal? why go after a gun owner to begin with? lotsa wallets walking about with no guns attached.
And jammer owners can quickly recognize a smart gun from a conventional one?
How confident is the jammer that his device has jammed? more like playing chicken on the highway.
OK, I put the magnets on the barrel so your gun will shoot off any second now so you may as well put it down & give me your money, OK? and thanks for letting me get so close to put them on, glad you didn't jerk the gun off to the side

Or is it the law abiding cit carries a jammer about in his glove compartment on the remote chance he runs into a road raging smart gun owner, or a wealthy criminal with kids so as to own one?
If someone were pointing a smart gun at me, whether disabled or not, I'd still be antsy pantsy about it. I think most anyone would be.
I don't think this has disproved the efficacy of smart guns.

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Response to jimmy the one (Reply #9)

Tue Aug 8, 2017, 10:01 AM

10. It's not *my* argument, and whataboutery hasn't yet refuted it:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whataboutism

Whataboutism is a propaganda technique formerly used by the Soviet Union in its dealings with the Western world, and subsequently used as a form of propaganda in post-Soviet Russia. When criticisms were leveled at the Soviet Union, the Soviet response would be "What about..." followed by an event in the Western world.[6][7][8]

The term whataboutery has been used in British English since the period of The Troubles conflict in Northern Ireland.[9][10] Lexicographers date the first appearance of the variant whataboutism to the 1990s,[5][9] while other historians state that during the Cold War Western officials referred to the Soviet propaganda strategy by that term.[6][11] The tactic saw a resurgence in post-Soviet Russia, relating to human rights violations committed by, and criticisms of, the Russian government.[6][12][13] The technique received new attention during Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea and military intervention in Ukraine.[14][15] Usage of the tactic extended to Russian President Vladimir Putin and his spokesman, Dmitry Peskov.[16][17][18]

The Guardian deemed whataboutism, as used in Russia, "practically a national ideology".[19] Journalist Julia Ioffe wrote that "Anyone who has ever studied the Soviet Union" was aware of the technique, citing the Soviet rejoinder to criticism, And you are lynching Negroes, as a "classic" example of the tactic.[20] Writing for Bloomberg News, Leonid Bershidsky called whataboutism a "Russian tradition",[21] while The New Yorker described the technique as "a strategy of false moral equivalences".[22] Jill Dougherty called whataboutism a "sacred Russian tactic",[23][24] and compared it to The pot calling the kettle black.[25]

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