Cybersecurity in Brain-Computer Interfaces: State-of-the-art, opportunities, and future challenges

by   Sergio López Bernal, et al.

BCIs have significantly improved the patients' quality of life by restoring damaged hearing, sight and movement capabilities. After evolving their application scenarios, from medicine to entertainment, the trend of these interfaces is breaking new frontiers enabling new innovative brain-to-brain and brain-to-the-Internet communication paradigms. The increment in the possibilities offered by BCIs generates an attractive terrain for attackers, since users' personal information and physical integrity could be under risk. This article presents a comprehensive work to understand BCIs, their software cybersecurity concerns and future challenges. We initiate the article by reviewing the state-of-the-art of BCIs from the availability, confidentiality, integrity, and safety risks associated with their most well-known classifications. After that, we review the existing architectural versions of the BCI life-cycle and homogenise them in a new approach that overcomes the limitations of the current ones. A survey of the cybersecurity attacks affecting each phase of the BCI cycle is performed to analyse the impacts and countermeasures documented in the literature. Furthermore, new unexplored attacks concerning each phase are presented as well. After that, we review documented cyberattacks affecting the deployments of the BCI cycle, as well as their impacts and countermeasures. Like in the BCI design, new opportunities, in terms of cyberattacks and countermeasures, missed by the literature, are documented. Finally, we reflect on lessons learned, highlighting research trends and future challenges concerning cybersecurity on BCIs.


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