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use of dallas keys / ibuttons

Posted on 2011-02-28
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
We have a bespoke epos system developed in house. At the moment users authenticate themselves by typing in a 4 digit pin number. We would like to use something like dallas keys (ibuttons) to do this instead. My question is what's to stop someone simply opening up notepad and pressing the dallas key to the reader to get the 16 digit sequence? Or into another text field of the epos system. My understanding is that it just provides a stream of characters just like a keyboard.
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Question by:groovyjon
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kode99 earned 500 total points
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Unlike bar code readers the ibutton readers are not installed as a keyboard or HID device.  

I have worked with some prox/smartcard readers in the past that are pretty similar to the Dallas chip stuff.  In those cases it was either serial port or directly via DLL with a USB driver.

Since I've not worked with the dallas chip readers specifically I did a bit of looking around .  Everything I found was done with a serial interface.  Even USB versions I found are 'connected' through a virtual serial port.  

Unless the software was specifically designed to read the card/button you won't see any card data.  Even within the program it is meant for the data should not actually show up when you swipe,  except maybe at a admin or diagnostic  level for key assignment.

Often the keys/buttons/cards are also encoded with additional information that ties cards to a specific site or to a vendor.  This is usually a global setting in the system and is something that the key holders would not even know of.  

There may be units that do setup like a keyboard but it seems pretty impractical for exactly the reason you are asking.  I only did a quick search.

If this is being developed inhouse it should be very simple for the software designer to properly incorporate the reader

Here's some info on HID proximity readers for computers,

http://www.hidglobal.com/iam/tabbedWithShowcase.php?pid=338


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