Smart Devices in the House – Lack of Security


It seems that 1 out of every 3 homes on average in North America have at least one smart device installed and running on their LAN network. Smart devices can be a tv, fridge, stove, door lock and bell, baby monitor, security system, video system, thermostat, ect…

Since the start of computers on the Internet with all the viruses out there the anti-virus / anti-trogen movement is always one to two steps behind the hackers responsible. Knowing all about virus and such you would think smart devices would follow since most times they have the same or close to the same in power on the Internet.

Let me explain… The typical computer of today has a display device (screen) with a input device (keyboard / mouse), a storage device (hard drive) and memory (ram) all connected via a CPU (central processing unit) and controlled by a preset list of commands (programming).

The smart device of today has a CPU, ram, storage device and programming. Most important the smart devices have a full operating system running in the background that is now getting to be a standard of today (such as Linux or XP Embedded). What they lack is a form of upgrades and anti-virus updates. Maybe when they first come out on the market they had the current level of updates to their operating system, but anyone who has a computer knows every one to two weeks there are usually new security upgrades available. Remember they are also on your Local Area Network (LAN) which is also connected to your Internet hookup.

Imagine as an example, you get the latest smart tv on the market with all the bells and whistles out there. 6 months go by and it updated maybe a few times. Just so you know those updates are mostly applications updating not security most of the time. You notice the station / Chanel your watching is normal but the Internet activity on your high-speed modem is going nuts. All the computers on your network are off. You wonder what the hell is causing all that data through the modem and why??? In the background your tv has gotten a virus and already collected your personal information from the computers behind your firewall router when they were on and is now transmitting the data to an external server hoping you won’t notice. Also it could be acting as a controlled virus server in a group of other controlled servers on the Internet called BOT NETS. Who knows… These are just Possible scenarios that can happen due to lack of security updates.

The manufactures of operating systems know they have to stay on top of this push-pull virus venture, if they don’t they walk a fine line in the court systems of today. Why do the manufactures of the smart devices not feel the same way??? The first court loss to the manufactures of the smart devices will slow down production and cause all the prices to go up.

Know I’m not saying all the manufactures of smart devices do not update their product lines, the more consumer friendly operating systems do. How ever in most cases as an example in android devices (not the only one) the main operating system was updated and released to the manufactures to fix the current bugs, but the manufactures hold that update due to the trial testing that is needed for their own software crap they add-on to the operating systems. This leaves the consumers without the needed updates that would protect the users. Hackers know this and use it to the full potential they can. As a result you get a lot of infected smart devices that steal consumer information or become part of a bot net to apply to a DDOS attack in the future.

All I can say right now is the manufactures of the (so-called) smart devices need to get off their asses and set the priority to helping the consumers of their products. They must be reminded that the consumers are the ones who pay their salaries and keep them in business.

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