Understanding the Internet of Things (IoT) and its vulnerabilities provides an introduction to IoT-based attacks.
The Internet of Things, sometimes IoT, is a network of linked gadgets and sensors that can gather and share data. Everything from manufacturing machinery to domestic appliances may be monitored and managed using the Internet of Things (IoT). The Internet of Things (IoT) has a lot of potential advantages, but it also gives cybercriminals new opportunities.
IoT-based assaults are a type of cyberattack that concentrates on IoT-related hardware. These assaults can turn off equipment or access critical data by exploiting network, app, and hardware flaws. IoT-based assaults can significantly affect people, companies, and vital infrastructure.
Several factors make IoT-based attacks possible, including:
– The large number of devices that are part of the IoT
– The fact that many IoT devices are not adequately secured
– The use of insecure protocols by IoT devices
– The lack of standardization in the IoT
IoT-based attacks are a growing concern and are likely to become more common in the future. Organizations that use IoT devices need to be aware of the risks and take steps to protect themselves.
Escalating issues with IoT security breaches
The “Internet of Things,” or “IoT,” is a network of gadgets connected to the Internet and expanding at an alarming rate as we become more dependent on technology. A renowned research and advisory firm, Gartner, predicts that by 2020, there will be 20.4 billion linked gadgets.
The Internet of Things (IoT) has numerous advantages, but because these devices sometimes lack basic cyber security measures, they are a potential target for cybercriminals. According to a recent Symantec study, IoT devices are three times more susceptible to hacking than conventional computers.
The Mirai botnet attack, which brought down well-known services like Netflix and Twitter, and the WannaCry ransomware attack, which affected over 200,000 victims in 150 countries, are just a few of the high-profile IoT-based attacks in recent years.
These attacks have made it clear that IoT device security has to be enhanced.
Two of the most urgent issues regarding IoT security breaches are as follows:
1. Insufficient safety precautions
IoT devices frequently lack even the most basic security precautions, which is one of the key reasons they are so vulnerable to attack. For instance, many devices either have no password protection at all or utilize weak passwords that are simple to guess.
Additionally, many IoT devices lack encryption, making it simple for hackers to intercept the data they transfer.
2. Issues with connectivity
Another severe worry is that many IoT devices must be adequately separated from the rest of the network. It means that if one device is compromised, the entire network could be accessed using that device.
Additionally, because IoT devices frequently remain online around the clock, they offer a steady entry point for cybercriminals.
What can be done, then, to increase IoT device security?
Ensuring that devices are appropriately isolated from the rest of the network is among the most crucial things. A Virtual Private Network (VPN) or a different network can be used for this.
Common IoT-based Attack Types
The amount of options for cybercriminals to conduct attacks also grows as the world gets more connected. The Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the most susceptible sectors to assault. IoT devices can act as a doorway for attackers into a network because they are frequently insecure.
We’ll examine three typical IoT-based attack methods in this blog.
1. DoS (denial-of-service) assaults
An attack known as a denial-of-service attempt aims to make a system or service unavailable. It is often accomplished by overwhelming the target with traffic or requests until it loses the ability to function and crashes. DoS attacks can be performed against any system, but because IoT devices frequently have constrained resources, they are particularly effective against them.
2. Attacks using a man-in-the-middle (MitM)
A man-in-the-middle attack is a style of attack in which the attacker listens in on two parties’ conversations. The assailant can then listen in on the chat or even change it. MitM attacks are frequently used to steal private data, including login credentials. Additionally, they can be used to introduce malware into a machine.
3. Attacks by malware
Malicious software that is intended to harm or take down a system is referred to as malware. It can spread through various channels, including downloads, malicious websites, and email attachments. DoS attacks, data theft, and identity theft are just a few of the attacks that may be launched using malware.
Cybercriminals are increasingly focusing on IoT devices. Malware, man-in-the-middle, and denial-of-service assaults are all frequent IoT-based attack types. Serious repercussions from these attacks could include data loss, system outages, and monetary loss. Manufacturers and consumers of IoT devices should know the hazards and take precautions to stay safe.
DDoS attacks on Internet of Things (IoT) devices
The growth of the Internet of Things (IoT) is unparalleled. Over 20 billion connected devices are anticipated by 2020. But this expansion also entails more danger. The potential for distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks is one of the most significant threats.
Here are four instances of DDoS assaults launched against Internet of Things equipment.
1. The attack on the Mirai botnet
A significant DDoS attack was launched in October 2016 using the Mirai botnet. Thousands of IoT devices infected with malware made up this botnet. Some of the biggest websites in the world, including Twitter, Netflix, and Reddit, were brought down due to the attack directed at the domain name service provider Dyn.
2. The attack on the WireX botnet
DDoS assaults against over 100 IoT devices, including webcams, routers, and even smart TVs, were launched in August 2017 using the WireX botnet. Over 25,000 infected devices made up the botnet, used to attack websites and services in the US, UK, and Europe.
3. The Reaper botnet assault
Reaper, a brand-new IoT botnet, was founded in October 2017. Because it may infect even unconfigured devices, this botnet is very hazardous. Over a million IoT devices are being used in Reaper, which is still active.
4. the attack on the Hajime botnet
The Hajime botnet was found in January 2018. This botnet is comparable to Reaper in that it can infect unconfigured devices. On the other hand, Hajime has over 3 million infected devices, making it far bigger. DDoS assaults are still being conducted using the botnet, which is still operational.
The function of botnets in IoT assaults
A network of hijacked computers known as “bots” that can be confiscated by an attacker to engage in destructive activity is known as a “botnet.” Because IoT devices sometimes have poor security safeguards, they are particularly susceptible to botnet assaults.
DDoS attacks, spamming, and information theft are just a few of the attacks that may be carried out using botnets. IoT devices are frequently employed in DDoS attacks because they have a high throughput capacity and are often not patched or protected.
When the DNS service provider Dyn was the target of a DDoS attack in October 2016, it caused significant internet outages. IoT devices like routers and security cameras that had been infected by malware made comprised the Mirai botnet.
IoT botnets pose a severe danger to internet security and potentially have a significant adverse effect on both consumers and organizations. It is essential to ensure that IoT devices are appropriately secured and updated to protect against these attacks.
Utilizing software and firmware flaws in IoT devices
IoT devices are gaining popularity since they provide a practical method of connecting to and controlling things remotely. However, they are also susceptible to attacks like any other internet-connected gadget. Targeting the firmware or other software that runs the device is one technique to exploit these vulnerabilities.
Firmware is a type of low-level software that is generally embedded within hardware and controls a device’s fundamental functions. It frequently does not receive software updates as regularly as the device’s primary software, leaving it more open to intrusion. Software, on the other hand, serves as a device’s direct application and is typically updated more frequently. However, if it has vulnerabilities that have not been addressed, it may be exposed to attack.
A buffer overflow attack is one sort of attack that can target either software or firmware. It happens when a program receives too massive data to process, overflowing its buffer and writing data into nearby memory. It can cause a crash or give an attacker access to the device by corrupting or overwriting other data.
Cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks are yet another attack that can target firmware or software. It happens when an attacker inserts malicious code into a web page, which the user’s browser subsequently executes. By doing this, the attacker may seize control of the user’s browser or steal sensitive data like cookies or session tokens.
IoT devices are frequently utilized to operate real-world objects like locks and lights. In other words, if a hacker manages to take control of an IoT device, they can do the same with the physical equipment to which it is attached. It can be used to harm property physically, like by starting a fire or entering a building or other location without permission.
IoT devices are frequently made to be affordable and straightforward to use, which might lead to security flaws. Manufacturers might need more security to save money or understand how crucial security is. Because manufacturers could be reluctant or unable to release updates for older products, it may be challenging to fix vulnerabilities.
Examples of IoT-based attacks in the Real World
In the modern era, everything is connected to the Internet, including our bodies, cars, and homes. The way we live, work, and play is changing due to the Internet of Things (IoT). But as the world gets increasingly interconnected, so does its susceptibility to assault.
There have been several high-profile IoT-based attacks in recent years that have garnered international attention.
Here are three actual instances of IoT-based assaults:
1. the attack on the Mirai botnet
Some of the most popular websites, including Twitter, Netflix, and Reddit, were brought down in 2016 by a significant distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack. The Mirai botnet, which consists of infected IoT devices, was responsible for the attack.
2. The Jeep Cherokee Exploit
Security researchers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek showed 2015 how they might remotely take over a Jeep Cherokee. By breaching the car’s entertainment system, they could access the CAN (Controller Area Network), which regulates its engine, brakes, and other vital systems.
3. The pacemaker hack at St. Jude Medical
The firmware of St. Jude Medical’s implantable cardiac pacemakers contained significant security flaws, according to research done in 2017 by Billy Rios and Jonathan Butts. They demonstrated how these flaws might be used to remotely disable or destroy the devices, endangering thousands or millions of lives.
These are only a few instances of the IoT-based attack types that are growing more prevalent. We must take action to protect our networks and gadgets from these risks as our world grows more linked.
Effects of the Mirai Botnet on IoT Security
A network of infected Internet of Things (IoT) devices called the Mirai botnet can be used to perform distributed denial of service (DDoS) assaults. Several well-known DDoS assaults, including one on the Krebs on Security website and a record-breaking attack on the DNS service provider Dyn, were conducted using the botnet initially identified in 2016 and utilized in them.
The Mirai botnet is renowned for using IoT devices, which frequently have weak security and little to no security protection, like routers and security cameras. Due to this, it is pretty simple for the botnet to take control of these devices and launch attacks using them.
The need for better IoT device security is brought to light by the Mirai botnet. IoT devices are frequently insecure, which can have catastrophic repercussions. The Mirai botnet is just one illustration of potential IoT-based attacks, and we will likely see more episodes.
Various actions can be taken to increase the security of IoT devices. Manufacturers may include security into products from the beginning, and consumers can use secure passwords and maintain their hardware up to date with the latest security updates.
The Mirai botnet serves as a reminder that IoT security is a serious problem and that we must take action to make IoT devices more secure.
IoT device theft and data breaches in the news cases
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of physical objects like cars, appliances, and other household products that can connect and share data thanks to electronics, software, sensors, and connectivity. IoT has completely changed how we live and work by clicking previously disconnected devices and objects to the Internet. However, this increased connectedness also makes these technologies more susceptible to new dangers and weaknesses.
In recent years, several high-profile instances of IoT devices have been taken over and exploited to commit data breaches.
The top five IoT-based assaults are listed below:
1. The IoT DDoS attack using Mirai
The Krebs on Security blog was subjected to a distributed denial of service (DDoS) assault in 2016 using the Mirai botnet. The attack was conducted by taking control of IoT devices, including routers and CCTV cameras, exploiting them to overload the blog’s servers with traffic, bringing the site offline.
2. The IoT DDoS attack on Dyn
IoT gadgets, including webcams and digital video recorders, were used in a DDoS attack targeting DNS service Dyn in October 2016. Popular websites and online services like Twitter, Reddit, and Netflix were unavailable several hours after the attack.
3. The ransomware attack on IoT
IoT devices, including routers and IP cameras, started getting infected in November 2016 by ransomware called “Linux.Darlloz.” The data on the device would subsequently be encrypted by the ransomware, which would demand payment to decrypt it.
4. The IoT botnet Hajime
A new Internet of Things botnet called “Hajime” spread in October 2017. The botnet aims to infect IoT devices and transform them into zombies that can mine cryptocurrencies or engage in DDoS attacks.
5. The IoT botnet Reaper
A new Internet of Things botnet called “Reaper” spread in November 2017. Reaper, like Hajime, aims to infect IoT devices and transform them into zombies that may be utilized for malicious purposes.