Shoulder Surfing The Friendly Skies

FAIL at 30,000ish feet 

When you fly nearly every week, you can get pretty bored on a plane.  When I am sick of working, playing games, or watching movies, my latest distraction is checking out laptop screens. Sometimes I'm curious what movie you are watching but other times I am interested in what type of confidential company information you are displaying for the world to see.  In the past few weeks I have seen the following types of information on my fellow flyer's screens:

  • End of year/end of quarter sales numbers
  • Disciplinary emails regarding employee peformance
  • Pre launch marketing information (which I presumed to be under embargo)
  • Competitive displacement information

Most of the time I suggest that my fellow traveler invest in a privacy screen, and most of the time they are receptive to the suggestion.  It really is astounding how many people don't spend the approximate $30 on one.  If your company doesn't issue them, I suggest you work to change that stance. World readable aren't the permissions you want on your laptop screen, time for chmod (UNIX joke).

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Comments

Thanks for sharing your

Thanks for sharing your voyeuristic travel habits Rick. I suspect many people do the same but are afraid to admit it.

I wonder why laptops don’t come with privacy screening technology already built into the display.

What would happen if you took a picture with your cell phone of that person’s laptop screen? Since they are viewing it in a public place (at least I think a plane is considered a public place), would they have any legal recourse against you?

Thanks for sharing your

Thanks for sharing your voyeuristic travel habits Rick. I suspect many people do the same but are afraid to admit it.

I wonder why laptops don’t come with privacy screening technology already built into the display.

What would happen if you took a picture with your cell phone of that person’s laptop screen? Since they are viewing it in a public place (at least I think a plane is considered a public place), would they have any legal recourse against you?

NMAP @ 30,000 feet

LOL, I was travelling to Blackhat this year and watched one of my fellow passengers running NMAP scans from his laptop using the airplane's WIFI connection. Turns out he was a friend of mine, but it was very funny.