Understanding the Need for Action in Cybersecurity
The International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is famous for showcasing the newest gadgets that will most likely appear on your Christmas list next year. Smartphones, massage chairs, high-tech pet accessories, alarm clocks— just to name just a few. But, in our haste to discover the latest and greatest in tech, one thing we might not be considering is security. Cybersecurity and consumer electronics have never been more intertwined, and their bond is tightening in ways that make house-hold devices vulnerable to cyber attack.
The Expanding Attack Surface
This year, CES will be dominated by Internet of Things (IoT) devices, each designed to deliver an intuitive user experience and intended to make life easier. The exhibition hall will be filled with items ranging from small wearable devices for health, fitness, education and gaming, to huge automated machines such as self-driving cars. Unfortunately, the opportunities for these new electronics to improve our daily routines are matched by the opportunities they create for cyber threat actors. These gadgets are a technologist’s’ dream, but a security analyst’s nightmare.
More Convenience, Less Security
New connected devices create new avenues for stealing data, launching disruptive attacks, and causing physical damage. For example, wearables collect valuable data about your most private activities— data that can be stolen and used against you by a cybercriminal. Other devices ranging from smart light bulbs to coffee machines can be exploited to launch large-scale cyberattacks while the owners are blissfully unaware. This technique was used to execute October’s crippling cyberattack on the Domain Name Registrar Dyn, shutting down major sites including Twitter and Amazon. Finally, these new devices create vulnerabilities which can lead to serious physical consequences. A nefarious actor could remotely shut down a baby monitor, disable a medical device, or remotely hijack a self-driving car. The perpetrators may even demand payment before releasing the device in what’s called a ransomware attack, a threat that’s been on the rise in 2016— especially in the healthcare industry.
There is no better place or time to talk about cybersecurity than CES 2017. Luckily, N2K is ready to prep and educate CES registrants for these cyber threats by hosting the conference’s second annual CES Cybersecurity Forum. The forum invites CES attendees to hear from cybersecurity experts about methods and people behind cyber attacks. The discussion will help participants think critically about their cyber defenses and prepare to secure themselves and their organizations.
Visit the CES Cybersecurity Forum presented by N2K and learn how to use the devices you love while building the security you need.