How An IoT Hack Could Bring Down The Grid
December 18, 2018
There’s been much speculation about the kind of hacking that will come with the Internet of Things. Now some research at Princeton University is looking at a possible scenario, one the researchers say is worth the effort to try to avert. They say that, given the almost total lack of security built into the devices, it would be easy to hijack a relatively small number of them and from there precipitate widespread blackouts. About 200,000 devices would need to be compromised, which sounds like a lot, but that’s out of about eight billion devices that were connected to the IoT worldwide in 2017, and twice that many that are expected by 2020. These are mostly devices without passwords or an easy way to install patches, and that’s a big part of the problem. Device security needs to be improved, but along with that, says one researcher quoted in this article, there is a need for regulation and for power companies to develop the capability to detect and isolate suspicious behavior.
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