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Are Computer Peripherals Open to Attack?

Are Computer Peripherals Open to Attack?

#InternetOfThings
#PlaystationHacks
The Internet of Things (IoT) is an interconnected system of devices with the ability to transfer data over a network without the need for human-to-human (or even human-to-computer) interaction. For example, IoT could be a heart monitor implanted in a person, a car to alert a driver when the tire pressure is low, or any other natural or man-made object that is connected to an IP address. While these devices are intended to make modern life easier, the IoT also introduces risks for cyberattack. The devices that could be open to attack include:
  • Gaming consoles
  • Amazon Echo
  • Virtual Reality (VR) Goggles
  • Cameras
  • Cell Phones
  • Other items connected to the Internet without security.
  • Are Gaming Consoles Vulnerable to Hacks?

    Microsoft had previously boasted that the Xbox 360 and Xbox One was immune to viruses because their software is written with PC code. However, since the Xbox is connected to the IoT, Xbox viruses are now a very real possibility. With that said, it should be pointed out that the risk is also fairly low. The reason that both Xbox hacks and PlayStation hacks are not common is because you cannot actually download something off Microsoft Edge or the other common web browsers on a gaming console. One of the only ways that you can get a virus on your Xbox is if you opened an email attachment that had code targeted to your game console. While that is pretty rare right now, it could be something that we see in the future as technology and future game consoles continue to evolve. In the past, cars consisted of just mechanical parts, but today, a lot of cars have enough technology to be a little computer of their own. Even in their current state, cars could be hacked. In fact, there are documentaries about such scenarios becoming a serious threat, which is why automakers have hired some of the best counter-hackers and cybersecurity professionals in the world to identify and stop these exploits. Some of the potential dangers could translate to viruses in your vehicle’s computer system or a hacker that shuts off vital components to your vehicle. Luckily, at this point in time, hacking a car costs too much and takes too much effort to make it worthwhile for hackers.

    Security Considerations for IoT

    As the IoT begins to blend into the everyday lives for millions of people, it’s easy to see just how problematic attacks on even basic devices could become. Ransomware has shut down hospitals for days. Imagine the paralyzing effect of similar attacks to individual consumers and their individual devices. How much would you be willing to pay to retake control of your thermostat that is part of the IoT? Hackers are evaluating these figures while attacks on interconnected peripherals are expected to rise. Just as companies work to beef up the security of the IoT devices they design, it’s important for the average consumer to be aware that the convenience of connectivity comes with a price and often-security risks. Recovery from viruses and ransomware attacks may involve the recovery of data lost. Let us know if you need help restoring your device or system. Call us at 1-800-388-1266 or complete our help form to get started.
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