To protect yourself and your home from intruders, sometimes you have to think like a thief. Hacking The System hosts Brian and Jason take you inside the mind of a hacker, teaching you tricks to beat thieves at their own game.
Hey guys: Brian Brushwood and Jason Murphy here, from Hacking the System, premiering on Nat Geo tonight. We’ve assembled a list of our favorite, most mind-bending lifehacks. These are tidbits that will blow your mind and redefine how you see the world:
1. Convert a disposable camera into a functional taser.
Yep. You read that right. Next time you’re at a wedding and your family’s clicking away with cheap, disposable cameras… just remember that with two screws, some wire, and a bit of solder, you get a nasty, powerful taser:
So while the bride and groom are clumsily dancing… you can be preparing to defend yourself against a drunken cousin Eddie.
2. Lost your key or forget your combination? Here’s how to open a padlock using just a soda can.
We lock up our bikes, lockers, and valuables with padlocks… Without the key or combination, everything’s safe, right?
Well, relatively safe. I mean, sure: maybe with some bolt cutters, an angle grinder, or a spare T-1000 you could rip it off. But it’s not like padlocks can be defeated with random trash laying around…
3. Why you should never, ever plug in strange USB drives (or, how to compromise a computer in less than 20 seconds).
This is our pal Darren’s USB ‘rubber ducky.’ It looks like a USB thumb drive and might even be labeled with something tasty, like ‘salaries.xls’. In fact, it’s actually a USB keyboard able to type thousands of pre-written commands in seconds.
Just 20 seconds after plugging it in to see what you can find, your entire system is compromised, and you’re no longer in control.
Remind me to stop using USB anythings. Forever.
4. Make homemade lock picks out of old butter knives.
Anyone can order lock picks and an instructional manual off of the internet, but Hacking the System loves to be more resourceful than that. In keeping with the DIY ethos, why not make something in your garage? You don’t have to have something that’s easily recognizable as a common thief’s tool. Make it yourself with a grinder and some kitchen utensils.
Spread some delightful jam and then minutes later, break into your storage shed! Just don’t leave any Smuckers on the door. That’s a dead giveaway.
5. How to make your own Bump Keys:
Let’s say you’re someone who is short on patience. Or maybe you don’t have a surgeons touch. Or let’s be honest – you’re just awful at picking locks.
Bump keys are your answer. This method requires less finesse than your traditional lock picks, but also less brute force than, say, kicking in the front door. It takes only seconds and works almost as well as having an actual key to the place you’re trying to get into. In fact, it works on 90% of American household locks. Luckily for homeowners, the process of lock bumping is a bit noisy.
6. Lock yourself out of your car? Get back in… using a piece of string.
If you’re prone to locking your keys in your car, you might want to consider making sneakers your footwear of choice. After all, a shoe string can come in handy next time you lock yourself out.
Don’t forget to check out our special, Hacking the System on Thursday, Feb. 27th at 9P!
For 15 years, Brian Brushwood has made a career out of social manipulation and thinking like a criminal. He’s performed incredible tricks, mastered harrowing stunts as a bizarre magician, and amassed a lot of dangerous knowledge along the way. Brian knows the tools of scientists and spies, crooks and con artists, and now, he’s using this encyclopedia of secret data to help you get the upper hand.
Brian Brushwood has earned a reputation as the “Internet’s mischief maker,” and has even been called “evil MacGyver,” due to his ability to hack household objects in unheard of ways. He’s revealing how to avoid people who cheat the system, and showing the legal tips, tricks, and shortcuts to get ahead in life – one hack at a time.