New age of cybersecurity

Imagine the office, equipped with a “clever” automated logistics system, capable of ordering expandable materials without human input, as well as web cameras, alarm system, and many other things that can log onto the net. Thus, any of the things can assist fraudsters in getting to ANY computer in your company and, if required, downloading information or making your computers a part of botnet. “Internet of things”, implying the capability of devices to connect to the Internet or each other, is a new trend in cybersecurity issues. Mobile phones, coffee machines, headphones etc. can be among the similar devices. By 2020 such devices will have reached approximately 25 billion, and all of them, theoretically, can connect to each other.

What causes such a sharp increase in quantity of the devices, potentially capable of ending up in botnet? The cost of Internet connection decreases while the number of gadgets and WI-FI connectable devices, on the contrary, increases. The cost of manufacturing process of “clever” devices also decreases, effectively increasing the scope of their application, and, as a result, the quantity. Great invasion of smartphones into our life contributes to simplification of botnet construction. And formation of botnet is just the first step since fraudsters will surely take advantage of it sooner or later. What for? For DDoS attacks, advertising click frauds, information download and other malicious automated actions.

A huge number of gadgets can connect to the Internet using the same IP address via public WI-FI, home and office networks. The possibilities grow day by day. We definitely can’t and shouldn’t stop the progress, but what we really have to think about is cyber security of “things” around us. E.g. think about smart TVs and take into account how easily they could be hacked and how vulnerable could become…

According to iicybersecurity.wordpress.com, originally called “connected TVs,” are now called as “smart TVs”. Any television that can be connected to the Internet to access services, use apps and behave in some way as our computers with web browser. Smart TVs connect to Internet via wired Ethernet connection or Wi-Fi to connect to a home network. Smart TVs require computer chips to juggle video processing, multiple screens and an Internet connection. They also use memory to buffer streaming video and music, and need additional processing power to deal with graphics. The TVs can be controlled by voice commands and by apps running on some Smartphone.

Dan Reynolds, information security solution and training expert of International Institute of cyber security explains that these Smart TVs are not that smart and the security of software isn’t exactly perfect. Smart TVs resemble for us the Internet of things (IoT) but old vulnerabilities which were considered to have completely disappeared are new vulnerabilities again in the Internet of Things (IoT). Sometimes you can easily find a flaw that can enable you to take a variety of actions on the TV, including accessing potentially sensitive data, remote files and information, the drive image and eventually gain root access to the device.

Protection against malicious use of “Internet of things” will become more and more popular in the coming years for the reasons given above.

Is your business ready to cope with this threat?

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