How the Internet of Things Devices are Being Used by Cyber Criminals

How the Internet of Things Devices are Being Used by Cyber Criminals

One of the next big thing in the technology field is said to be the Internet of Things. It is said to form the basis of making employees even more productive and also lower operation costs for businesses. While the world is warming up to this technology, a new setback is in the offing. Information technology experts have revealed that this massive armory of Internet of Things is a fertile ground for launching cybercrime. It is a very vulnerable part of a corporation.

In the next half a decade, it is projected that about 24 billion devices will be connected to Internet of Things. This will mean that more than double the currently connected devices will be connected. While many more devices keep on being connected, there is less concentration on security. These new technologies will get their highest customer ratio from businesses.

On the recent attack of world-renowned websites, Internet of Things is said to have been the prime suspect as the gateway of this attack. Websites such as Twitter, Amazon and Spotify were the major casualties of this attack.

Security Negligence

Security Negligence
Great deals of manufacturers of Internet of Things technologies ignore some key basic security procedures. They at the time use weak or no encryption to code passwords directly to the software of the devices. This exposes the device to hacking too easily.

Door locks and solar panels connected to the internet were found to be having dozens of critical issues at a recent conference. These devices were found to be faulty in a number of ways which exposed them to easy access by hackers. Ethical researchers recently were able to drive a jeep Grand Cherokee, wirelessly which shocked the manufacturers. They were forced to recall close to one and a half million jeeps already dispatched.

Illustration of Lack of Basic Security Measures

Internet of Things sometimes lacks even the fundamental security apparatus. This was clearly exposed when a distributed-denial-of-service-attack was run on a journalist’s website. The website went down for a couple of days. The website was flooded with traffic thereby denying the journalist the ability to use it. The data traffic was about 620 gigabytes per second, which automatically kicked him off the server. This according to experts was just a tip of the iceberg as more distributed-denial-of-service attacks were on the way. The attacker took advantage of the loosely secured website by using infected Internet of Things devices as slaves of launching the attack. He used software to scan and detect devices with weak security, which were connected. Weeks after the attack, the code of the software used to launch the attack was made public which means it can still be developed to form a more sophisticated malicious code.

How Botnets are used by Cyber Criminals?

Cyber Criminals
Botnets, as this army of the infected Internet of Thing devices, are commonly referred to, can use the malicious codes to come up with hundreds of smaller units; bots, in a bid to launch a distributed-denial-of-service attack. These large areas created by this thousands and hundreds of bots makes this attacks successfully in cases where devices are not well guarded. Devices in botnets are connected all over the world. This makes it very hard to track down the responsible culprit. Stopping the attack is also not easy. It is extremely hard when data traffic does not directly go to a thermostat but bounces back to the web camera.

Faulty Internet of Things Devices

Web cameras and video recorders especially the digital type manufactured by Chinese companies were the most devices used in recent attacks. This does not exonerate routers and satellite antennae. With the increase of more and more technological things, there should be mechanisms put in place to make them safer. While this new technology aims at making the world more civilized, it is losing in the sense that close to two million devices have been “abducted” by hackers. The challenge is that most devices are set up and left alone, thus it becomes hard to notice when the device have been tampered with. This is the major challenge faced by average users of these devices, especially those with little or no information technology expertise.

Lack of Technological Skills

Most firms and businesses are trained on how to set up their devices. So when their devices are not secure they are exposed to danger, and cannot do anything about it as they set up and never look at it again. This there makes the vulnerability static in that, the sites are not secure and the owners cannot secure them as they do not know they are exposed to cybercrime attacks.

Also Read: China’s First Quantum Satellite: A hit or a Miss?


While cyber criminals are using thousands of devices to attack one target, firms and corporations should also distribute and transfer critical infrastructure to cloud hosts such as Amazon and Microsoft. This makes several servers take cares of corporate resources over the same time. The easiest way of knowing a device on the Internet of Things technology that has been compromised, is it connecting to anything else apart from the mother server. Internet of Things devices calls on the manufacturer’s server, which is a predictable trend. Enterprise should invest in more security measure than average users who only worry of webcam hack or even their home baby monitor.

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