In a few words, there are some issues. But, really, don’t worry about it. But be aware of whats going on. So are your home’s Internet-connected smart gadgets smart enough to ward off hackers? A research team found that they’re pretty dumb in this area.
Baby monitors and Wi-Fi cameras bombed. One camera even granted access after the default login and password were entered. These gadgets use web server software to post online images, and that’s where the loophole exists—in over five million gadgets already online.
The researchers were able to take control of other gadgets as well. There’s a widely used networking system by the gadgets, called UPnP. This allowed the researchers to gain control. The gadgets use UPnP to reach servers that are out on the wider network, and this can expose them to hackers. When a password is built-in and can’t be changed, this makes the situation even worse.
A rather unnerving part of the experiment involved a microphone on a smart TV. The team was able to bug a living room through this. So if you’re sitting there with no shirt on enjoying a movie on that smart TV…someone could be sitting a thousand miles away—or down the street—enjoying watching YOU.
With the way cyber crime is evolving, the risks of having smart gadgets will likely grow bigger and bigger.
The prognosis from the research: Looks like smart gadgets will be easy prey for cyber predators in the near future. Manufacturers need to improve their ability to secure their products. And there’s no simple method for updating the flimsy firmware on the smart gadgets in the first place.
And would it be cost-effective to improve products? One researcher says yes for many products. Would “hardening” the products compromise their usability? For the most part, no. A balance can be struck. But right now, compromised usability is the least of the problems out there. There’s actually a lot of room to fix the flaws without hampering the user’s experience.
ROBERT SICILIANO, CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com is fiercely committed to informing, educating, and empowering Americans so they can be protected from violence and crime in the physical and virtual worlds. His "tell it like it is" style is sought after by major media outlets, executives in the C-Suite of leading corporations, meeting planners, and community leaders to get the straight talk they need to stay safe in a world in which physical and virtual crime is commonplace. Siciliano is accessible, real, professional, and ready to weigh in and comment at a moment's notice on breaking news.
- How Hackers are Hacking Smarthomes
“My house was hacked!” Had you said this 25 years ago, people would have thought a burglar vandalized it with an axe. Say it today and nearly everybody will know what you mean: A thief or prankster “broke” in to your house via its connected-to-the-Internet gadgets. If something’s connected, like your refrigerator, the possibility of hacking
- 3 Incredible Reasons Why Security Cameras Rock
Reason 1: In Pittsfield Massachusetts a minor league baseball team was reeling after continual theft from the team’s locker room. And to help solve the problem they I installed a single video surveillance camera. The 42 year old thief was recently caught on camera and arrested for stealing cash from the lockers of the team during
- Internet of Things and Home Security
Hah, that dual chamber deadbolt and the door jamb reinforcement! Yup, they’re good at keeping thieves from getting to your jewelry box and stash of $100 bills, but what about your bank accounts and identity? If you have any “smart” gadgets in your house, cybercriminals may be able to hack into these and burrow straight to
- New Consumer Electronics Security Lacking
Early adopters of new technology often discover bugs, quirks, imperfections, and security issues before a product is widely adopted. That’s why I usually wait six to eight months for companies to fix their flaws. Researchers discovered they could hack into Internet-ready HDTV’s. One of the top five best-selling TVs left its security process vulnerable to attack,
- 6 Ways to Protect your Internet of Things from Hackers
Everything seems like it is connected to the Internet, just about, including TVs, home thermostats, sprinkler controls, door locks, egg trays (yes, there’s an app for that), tooth brushes (cray cray), and more. A study by HP shows that 70 percent of devices have vulnerabilities. Researchers have revealed that most of the devices in their study,