Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Global cyberattack is a warning for 'internet of things'

From Nikkei Asian Review

Low-security connected devices, rise of bitcoin enable spread of ransomware
TOKYO -- The current global cyberattack targets weaknesses endemic to modern information technology, exploiting security weaknesses in web-connected devices and the anonymity of the virtual currency bitcoin.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters Monday afternoon he had been told of a number of victims in the country. As of Saturday morning, roughly 2,000 terminals at some 600 Japanese IP addresses had been hit, said a private cybersecurity group, the Japan Computer Emergency Response Team Coordination Center. The damage was expected to spread Monday as the workweek resumed.

One computer was affected at water and sewer services in the city of Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture. A Hitachi group company's appliance-ordering system was halted, preventing transactions with volume retailers, and workers were still trying to bring the system back online as of Monday night.

Elsewhere, attacks on infrastructure and production centers also stood out. A U.K. plant belonging to Japan's Nissan Motor suffered an attack, as did French automaker Renault, which halted work at several plants. British hospitals were forced to call off some procedures due to the strike, and the Spanish telecom Telefonica was hit as well. German railways suffered attacks on electronic arrivals and departures boards, as well as ticket machines.

It was no coincidence that companies and municipalities handling critical infrastructure were hit so heavily. The attackers apparently chose targets that would suffer greatly if they did not recover their data quickly, says analyst Toshio Nawa of Japan's Cyber Defense Institute. Such bodies, he says, are easy to extort because they cannot afford for operations to halt....MUCH MORE
See also:
In Light of Recent Events, Smart Cities May Not Be. NVIDIA's "Slightly Terrifying" Metropolis Platform
"The Internet of Things Goes Rogue"
"Uh Oh: Internet Security Pro Hit By Botnet Made Of Internet-of-Things Connected Cameras
Internet of Things Banking: What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

And one of my favorites, from 2014
Internet of Things: In Which Izabella Approaches Escape Velocity Edition