Data Pools: Wi-Fi Geolocation Spoofing

Wi-Fi Geolocation Spoofing CEOs

Posted 2018-07-01 in prototypes tagged #wifi #spoofing
DataPools summer Wi-Fi spoofing event
DataPools summer Wi-Fi spoofing event

DataPools is a Wi-Fi geolocation spoofing project that virtually relocates your phone to the latitudes and longitudes of Silicon Valley success. It includes a catalog and a SkyLift device with 12 pre-programmed locations. DataPools was produced for the Tropez summer art event in Berlin and in collaboration with Anastasia Kubrak.

DataPools catalog pool index
DataPools catalog pool index

Weren't invited to Jeff Bezos's summer pool party? No problem. DataPools uses the SkyLift device to mimick the Wi-Fi network infrastructure at 12 of the top Silicon Valley CEOs causing your phone to show up, approximately, at their pool. Because Wi-Fi spoofing affects the core geolocation services of iOS and Android smartphones, all apps on phone and the metadata they generate, will be located in the spoofed location.

DataPools in action at Tropez / Humboldthain Park in Berlin. Phone is at Jeff's House in Beverly Hills
DataPools in action at Tropez / Humboldthain Park in Berlin. Phone is at Jeff's House in Beverly Hills

Data Pools is a metaphor for a store of wealth that is private. The luxurious pools and mansions of Silicon Valley are financed by the mechanisms of economic surveillance and ownership of our personal information. Yet, the geographic locations of these premises are often concealed, hidden, and removed from open source databases. What if we could reverse this logic and plunge into the pools of ludicrous wealth, both virtually and physically? Could we apply the same methods of data extraction to highlight the ridiculous inequalities between CEOs and platform users?

Comparison of wealth distribution among top Silicon Valley CEOs
Comparison of wealth distribution among top Silicon Valley CEOs

Data

Technically, DataPools uses a Wi-Fi microcontroller programmed with the BSSIDs and SSIDs from the target locations, which were all obtained using openly published information from web searches and wigle.net. This data is then programmed onto the firmware of the SkyLift device. One SkyLift device contains all 12 pool locations. However, throughout the installation improvements were made and the updated firmware now uses one main location with multiple sub-locations to cover a larger area during installations. This method was more effective at spoofing many phones in large area and is ideal for installations.

Geo-plot of Wi-Fi networks for Mark Zuckerberg's private pool in Palo Alto.
Geo-plot of Wi-Fi networks for Mark Zuckerberg's private pool in Palo Alto.

Hardware

The source code, schematic, and board files are available soon at github.com/adamhrv/skylift

SkyLift Wi-Fi geolocation spoofing device circuit
SkyLift Wi-Fi geolocation spoofing device circuit

Downloads

Credits