Security flaws continue to be exposed

1 min read

We all think that connected devices are secure, but one report after another shows the situation is very different. Only recently, New Electronics highlighted vulnerabilities in medical and connected factory devices. Before that, we saw the infamous Jeep hack. And the WannaCry hack affected people and companies alike around the world.

The latest report – from consumer body Which? – says it has shown that hackers could access your home network and connected appliances readily.

In what it called a ‘snapshot’ investigation, it set up a network featuring such smart gadgets as wireless cameras, smart padlocks and children’s toys, then hired a team of ethical security researchers to hack it.

While some of the devices proved harder than others to hack, eight of the 15 appliances on the network had at least one security flaw. You might excuse something like a connected toy, but designers of wireless network routers should know better.

The report reinforces the perception that companies designing products for the Internet of Things don’t take security seriously enough. Which? says any connected product should have a unique password and should use two factor authentication, while manufacturers should update software regularly.

According to Alex Neill, managing director of home products for Which?: “Manufacturers need to ensure that any smart product sold is secure by design.”

But some security experts believe that many engineers don’t know where to start when it comes to security or how to keep devices secure in the future.