Our work titled “PerfWeb: How to Violate Web Privacy with Hardware Performance Events” has been featured on the Motherboard.

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/mgm4w4/this-spy-app-can-see-if-youve-visited-whistleblowing-sites-on-the-dark-web

To stay off the radar when leaking information to the press, whistleblowers often turn to the dark web to mask their identity. But that’s no match for a new malicious app that spies on your computer hardware, and can tell when you’ve visited whistleblower sites through the Tor Browser.

Thankfully, this revelation doesn’t come from hackers. Instead, the app was developed by computer scientists at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), and they uploaded a paper outlining their work to the arXiv preprint server last week. Their app makes use of a well-known attack in academic circles: if you carefully track and analyze the patterns of use on a computer’s processor, you can piece together what the user is actually doing.