NEW YORK: BLACKBERRY HACKED a bloody kettle at the firm's Security Summit and offered attendees (PG) tips on how to prevent this happening to them.
BlackBerry is keen to demonstrate the increasing security threat surrounding the Internet of Things (IoT) as hackers start to shift from server-level attacks to targeting user end-points, and decided that the best way to demonstrate this was to hack a kettle.
Or a 'tea kettle', as those bloody Americans call it.
This is bad news if you're one of the four people who coughed up £100 for a kettle that lets you start boiling water from your iPhone, as BlackBerry warned that this makes it easier for hackers to see your location and presumably pop round for a cup of tea.
Campbell Murray, technical director of Blackberry-owned Encription, led the demo, his British accent confirming why a tea-making device had become the centre of attention.
Murray showed that common security flaws in the WiFi network, including the use of '0000' as a password, enabled him and his colleague Fraser Winterborn, head of R&D at Encription, to compromise the kettle and capture insecure communications including the user's location.
The entire hack took just 14 minutes, and Murray pointed out that the key takeaway is that no evidence was left behind, and that "the only way to solve these issues is to prevent them", which businesses fail to do.
Research unveiled by the firm during the bizarre kettle hack show showed that half of all organisations worth more than $500m admit that they are not fully prepared to deal with a hack, which costs the economy $400bn annually, or one per cent of yearly global income.
Europe was named and shamed as among the worst. BlackBerry said that 80 per cent of European companies have suffered an attack in the past 12 months.
BlackBerry went on to show how the company's security services could have stopped the attack, naturally, but by this point we had started to drop off. Maybe our coffee had been hacked. µ
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