With all the hacks going on this weekend at DefCon, the world's largest annual hacker convention, perhaps the most embarrassingly easy to crack was Medeco's high-security locks. According to a group of security researchers, all you need to get into an Medeco M3 lock, used in sensitive facilities such as the White House and the Pentagon, is a low-res image of someone's key and a credit card.
The researchers took a photograph of a Medeco key, printed the image onto a label and used the label as a cut-out guide for reshaping the plastic of the credit card. Voila; State secrets here we come! Any credit card plastic could be used to create a simulated key, they said.
The Medeco M3 key does have an extra feature that is supposed to add security - a step protrusion on one side of the key that helps moves the Medeco lock's slider. But the same crew that created this easy hack proved last year that all you needed to do was insert the end of a bent paper clip into lock, pushing back the slider and rendering the feature toothless. Considering Medeco locks are three to four times more expensive than conventional ones, maybe the company should jump on this problem stat. [Wired]