Keyghost II Professional Security Device
The security of computer systems is of major
concern to all users. Millions of dollars are spent annually to reduce systems
vulnerability. However, a cursory review of published reports reveals that
losses due to intentional or unintentional security failures are
A common solution to these risks is to install software
programs that keep a log of computer activity by recording, and displaying at
request, all keystrokes typed on the keyboard. These are very powerful and easy
However, there has been increasing concern over issues such as
security and privacy of monitoring devices. At the workplace, such devices (for
example, cameras) are incorporated either as a security measure or a tool to
monitor employee activity/productivity. The employee may feel violated and
deprived of his or her privacy. On the other hand, the employer states "...it's
in the best interest of the company ... we have no ulterior
In law enforcement, these devices are necessary to monitor
suspects for illegal activity. In short, these "tools" are used constantly to
supervise people and their actions. No doubt, monitoring devices are
controversial... but here to stay.
In this review, we will be taking a "look" at one such
monitoring tool, the keystroke logger, which records every keystroke you make on
your computer. There are two main types of such
loggers: hardware based keystroke loggers and those which are software based.
The differences between the two will be discussed in detail in the next
The focus of this review will be
on a hardware based keystroke logger called the Keyghost II Professional.
Unfortunately, I am not at liberty to show you what the entire
unit looks like... for obvious reasons.
What is it?
Keyghost II Professional is a small device which can thought of best as a pass
through connector between your PS/2 keyboard connector and your PS/2 keyboard
input on your PC. Its primary function, only to monitor keystrokes. In case those
of you have the 'AT' style keyboard interface, the package does come with the
necessary converters to ensure proper use.
The key to Keyghost's operation is an embedded chip located
on the pass through connector. This chip can store up to 500,000 keystrokes in
its non volatile flash memory and offers 128 bit encryption. If you wish to have a device which provides more
storage capacity, the manufacturer does have a model to fit your
The Keyghost requires no battery for operation. In addition, no
software needs to be installed as the embedded chip contains all of the
information needed in its 8KB of ROM.
Keyghost II Professional is probably the easiest thing to do on earth. Simply
connect the keyboard to the device and use the pass though connector of the
device to connect to the computer system itself. All that exists is a small,
undetectable device between the keyboard on the computer system. No software
needs to be installed and this simple connection ends the installation