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Researchers go hunting for Netflix’s Bandersnatch
A new research paper from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras explains how popular Netflix interactive show Bandersnatch could fall victim to a side-channel attack. In 2016, Netflix began adding TLS (Transport Layer Security) to their video content to ensure strangers couldn’t eavesdrop on viewer habits. Essentially, now the videos on Netflix are hidden away behind HTTPS—encrypted and compressed. Previously, Netflix had run into some optimisation issues when trialling the new security boost, but they got there in the end—which is great for subscribers. However, this new research illustrates that even with such measures in place, snoopers can still make accurate observations about their targets. What is Bandersnatch? Bandersnatch is a 2018 film on Netflix that is part of the science fiction series Black Mirror, an anthology about the ways technology can have unforeseen consequences. Bandersnatch gives viewers a choose-your-own-adventure-style experience, allowing for various options to perform task X or Y. Not all of them are important, but you’ll never quite be sure what will steer you to one of 10 endings.
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