The Coming Internet-Of-Things Horror Show

in internet on (#1NNSC)
Like many others, Bruce Schneier is sounding the alarm that the Internet of Things security nightmare isn't just about things like poor or non-existent security for thermostats: rather, that "software control" of an ever-widening pool of interconnected devices and systems designed to act without human intervention creates an urgent threat the likes of which we've never seen.

Schneier says, "A recent Princeton survey found 500,000 insecure devices on the internet. That number is about to explode. Autonomy. Increasingly, our computer systems are autonomous. They buy and sell stocks, turn the furnace on and off, regulate electricity flow through the grid, and—in the case of driverless cars—automatically pilot multi-ton vehicles to their destinations. Autonomy is great for all sorts of reasons, but from a security perspective it means that the effects of attacks can take effect immediately, automatically, and ubiquitously."

Re: Looked into connected thermostat... (Score: 0)

by Anonymous Coward on 2016-07-29 12:25 (#1NVZ9)

The one place a connected thermostat comes in handy is with vacation or rental property. I have a place in Florida and believe me, you want that place cooled down when you arrive. But you also don't want to run the A/C for 20 days when it is unoccupied. A connected thermostat is perfect for this. Also the system can monitor the temperature and send notifications if the current temperature goes outside of set boundaries (handy for avoiding frozen pipes or other extreme temperature disasters). As for securing it against outside unwanted control, so far sticking the entire system behind a VPN has worked good. So the thermostat (which has pretty lousy security) is not exposed directly to the internet; it sits behind a firewall and can only be accessed via VPN.
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