MICS Capstone Project Summer 2023


Problem Statement

Near Field Communication (NFC) technology has become increasingly prevalent in modern digital devices, enabling seamless data exchange over short distances. While this convenience has transformed various aspects of daily life, it has also exposed users to potential cyber threats. Cybercriminals can exploit NFC vulnerabilities, such as relay attacks, replay attacks, man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks, eavesdropping, and using NFC as a steppingstone for further hacking and malware activities. Such attacks can compromise users' privacy, track their movements, steal personal information (PII), and even take control of their devices.

Sophisticated cyber actors have historically utilized NFC to target and compromise specific individuals, leading to the theft of sensitive content and location data from their smart devices. To counter these threats and protect users from surveillance and unauthorized access, we propose the development of a solution that effectively mitigates NFC-related attacks while also exposing unethical behavior.

Project Solution

Our innovative application, "NearSecure," is designed to safeguard user privacy and prevent NFC-related attacks. By continuously scanning and logging NFC signals, it identifies and blocks potential attacks aimed at tracking users or stealing their PII. The NearSecure App operates seamlessly in the background of a user's smartphone, ensuring uninterrupted protection without compromising device performance.

Below are our application's key features:

Real-Time NFC Monitoring: NearSecure scans for and records NFC signals to detect any malicious activity that might compromise user security and privacy.

Attack Mitigation: When an unwanted RFID signal is detected, NearSecure thwarts the attack, preventing unauthorized access and data theft.

Untraceable Random Data Transmission: As an additional layer of defense, NearSecure acts as an RFID tag that transmits random and unreadable data alongside legitimate NFC signals. This blocks the adversaries' RFID readers and prevents them from obtaining sensitive information.

Location Mapping: NearSecure provides users with a visual representation of detected NFC attacks on a map, allowing them to understand the scope and patterns of potential threats.

Privacy-Focused: NearSecure upholds the utmost commitment to user privacy, as it collects no personal data, ensuring that users' information remains secure and confidential.

User-Friendly Interface: The NearSecure App boasts a simple and intuitive user interface, making it accessible to users of all levels of technical expertise.

Our goal is to empower users with a robust defense against NFC-related cyber threats without compromising their privacy. By actively countering surveillance attempts and providing valuable insights into cybercriminal activity, NearSecure aims to create a safer digital environment for all users.

Last updated: August 10, 2023