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The problem with the Internet of Things (IoT) & a fish tank

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Quick and Dirty Definition: The Internet of Things (IoT) is everything else connected to the internet that is not a traditional computer or optional tool (like printers).

This means watches, washing machines, refrigerators, robots, vacuum cleaners, security cameras, baby phones, BBQ thermostats, water sensors, light bulbs, pace makers, insulin injectors, cars etc. etc. etc.

You may have devices you connect to the internet that makes your life easier without thinking security... the issue is, is the manufacturer thinking security? You know OS developers worry about hackers, you know your router and your PC and your Tablet and your Phone have security settings... but does that light bulb? Was the manufacturer of your coffee pot worried about security? The answer is usually no.

Manufacturers of security cameras are not controlled, so their is almost no protection built in. Jogging soldiers and airman have been found to be giving away important data on our bases due to apps tracking them as the jog. Robotic vacuum cleaners are collecting data on the layout of your house and the data is being sold.

I present you with a new example of this:

Casino Gets Hacked Through Its Internet-Connected Fish Tank Thermometer

https://thehackernews.com/2018/04/iot-hacking-thermometer.html

Quote

Internet-connected technology, also known as the Internet of Things (IoT), is now part of daily life, with smart assistants like Siri and Alexa to cars, watches, toasters, fridges, thermostats, lights, and the list goes on and on.

But of much greater concern, enterprises are unable to secure each and every device on their network, giving cybercriminals hold on their network hostage with just one insecure device.

Nicole Eagan, the CEO of cybersecurity company Darktrace, told attendees at an event in London on Thursday how cybercriminals hacked an unnamed casino through its Internet-connected thermometer in an aquarium in the lobby of the casino.

According to what Eagan claimed, the hackers exploited a vulnerability in the thermostat to get a foothold in the network. Once there, they managed to access the high-roller database of gamblers and "then pulled it back across the network, out the thermostat, and up to the cloud."

Manufacturers majorly focus on performance and usability of IoT devices but ignore security measures and encryption mechanisms, which is why they are routinely being hacked.

Therefore, people can hardly do anything to protect themselves against these kinds of threats, until IoT device manufacturers timely secure and patch every security flaws or loopholes that might be present in their devices.

 

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