January 16, 2014
Security researchers at Proofpoint have uncovered the very first wide-scale hack that involved television sets and at least one refrigerator.
Yes, a fridge.
This is being hailed as the first home appliance “botnet” and the first cyberattack from the Internet of Things.
A botnet is a series of computers that seem to be ordinary computers functioning in people’s homes and businesses, but are really secretly controlled by hackers. The Internet of Things, is a new term in the tech industry that refers to a concept where every device in your house gets its own computer chip, software, and connection to the Internet: your fridge, thermostat, smart water meter, door locks, etc.
To a hacker, they all become computers that can be hacked and controlled.
In this case, hackers broke into more than 100,000 everyday consumer gadgets, such as home-networking routers, connected multi-media centers, televisions, and at least one refrigerator, Proofpoint says. They then used those objects to send more than 750,000 malicious emails to enterprises and individuals worldwide.
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