A counterfeit cigarette with a large LED screen can be used for the same purpose as a real cigarette but it also has a built-in video camera to record the contents of the packet, and the device is designed to be used to make payments.
The video camera will then broadcast to the real cigarette a link to an online auction site where a buyer can bid on the item.
The video device has been made by the Australian Cybercrime Group, a group of researchers based in the United Kingdom.
The group said it had made about $1.6 million of counterfeit cigarette products since 2015, with some of the proceeds going to criminal groups.
It was made by using an existing product and then re-using the same material, the group said.
“This is the first time we’ve seen an actual counterfeit cigarette that can actually be made,” said James Cairns, an Australian Cyber Crime Group researcher.
“I was a little concerned about the security of the device but it’s so much easier to use than a real device.”
Cairns said the group had developed an app for the counterfeit cigarette which uses the camera to broadcast a link where the real device can then buy the item on its own.
The fake cigarette will not actually contain the actual device, however.
Instead, the device will record the video and upload it to a website where a bidder can buy it on its behalf.
This will be used in a botnet, or a group that is controlled by hackers, to steal money from other people’s computers and upload them to a server in China.
If the device was successful, the fake cigarette could be used as a payment method for cybercriminals, who would then send the money to the Chinese government.
The group has also developed a way to use the device to track payments from a real electronic cigarette, such as a Vape, through a video link.
“We’ve also seen a number of counterfeit devices that can also be used with an IP camera that can then be used by the botnet to make fake payments to the IP camera provider,” Cairn said.
But what if the fake device doesn’t work?
If you don’t want to give up your real cigarettes, Cairsons research suggests that you could buy a fake device.
“There’s a number in the marketplace that can be a real alternative to a real tobacco cigarette,” he said.
“We’ve seen counterfeit devices which can be purchased for as little as $5 or $10 and they can be sold as counterfeit cigarettes.”
However, he cautioned that you should not buy these fake cigarettes for yourself.
“You don’t need a real thing in order to make a fake one,” he told the ABC.
“You just need the right type of thing.”
Cairsons research also shows that a fake cigarette can be easily modified to be harder to detect and hack, which can lead to counterfeiters buying fake cigarettes and reselling them on eBay.
He also said the real tobacco industry had to work hard to keep up with the rise of fake cigarettes.
“The industry is definitely aware of it and there’s a concerted effort to combat this,” he added.