Riskiest IoT devices: What you need to be on the lookout for

The risks of Internet of Things (IoT) and connected devices are often talked about. But it seems there’s a long way to go before device manufacturers start taking the security risks seriously. 

Security vendor Zscaler recently looked into which IoT devices are most likely to be compromised in a variety of ways, including the spread of malware, credential theft, data breaches and more. The study found that the most common devices for these security risks were

  • security cameras
  • home entertainment systems
  • printers, and
  • VOIP phones.

These devices frequently used plain-text http protocol for authentication, according to Zscaler. That leaves an easily breachable channel for hackers to intercept traffic or obtain sensitive information.

Cameras have backdoor

In similar findings, Sony cameras were recently found to have a critical backdoor in 80 models. This could allow the cameras to be used in Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks.

The cameras had hard-coded credentials that were used to connect to the Telnet service on the cameras. That could also allow for a full takeover of the camera.

As with most IoT based attacks, the answer to this problem isn’t simple. There are firmware updates available to address the specific issue, but it won’t do much to curb the overall problem of unsecured devices that can be used to attack your systems from the outside.

Your best bet: Make sure you’re staying on top of your own devices’ updates, and do whatever possible to isolate your crucial networks from outside vulnerabilities.