Visual Security Breaches … Or “Shoulder Surfing”

One aspect of security that is easy to overlook is visual security where sensitive information is displayed on a screen in a location where it can be overlooked by people who should not have access to that information.

A new (to me) paper discusses this issue in greater depth.

Whilst it may not seem much of an issue, it is easy to imagine someone visiting an office – perhaps a vendor trying to sell a product – and whilst wandering through the office gets a glimpse of someone’s personal details on screen whilst they are being amended. Or someone working on a document on their laptop on the train; the passenger in the seat next to them has an excellent view of the contents.

It is perhaps something to consider when designing office layouts, and when working on a laptop in any public place.

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