In today’s internet-connected world we have many devices at our homes and offices that are constantly online. Most of these products were purchased at either an electronics store or via an online retailer. What this means is that more often than not, these devices have generic logins that have been setup by the manufacturer in order to provide you with support later or in case you need to reset the device in the event you forget or misplace the password. The biggest issue with all of this is when we as consumers, don’t disable; nor change the default passwords along with some of the safeguards listed below. This is when we become vulnerable to these attacks. There are some typical manual ways that you should consider to protect your smart device from being hacked.
You can follow these simple steps:
1. Change Default Passwords: If you have got any internet-connected device at home or work, change your credentials if it still uses default ones. Changing those passwords periodically is also not a bad idea.
2. Disable Universal Plug-and-Play (UPnP): UPnP comes enabled by default on every internet-connected device, creating a hole in your router’s security that could allow malware to infiltrate any part of your local network. So, check for “Universal Plug and Play” features and turn them OFF.
3. Disable Remote Management through Telnet: Go into your router’s settings and disable Remote Management Protocol, specifically through Telnet, because this protocol is used for allowing one computer to control another from a remote location. It has also been used in previous Mirai attacks.
4. Check for Software Updates and Patches: Last but not the least, always keep your internet-connected devices and routers up-to-date with the latest vendor firmware.
Don’t forget that it is every single customer’s job in the entire IoT devices chain to be responsible for the security of their point of connection as well as beyond.
Moreover, when it comes to small-area or city-wide IoT implementations, anything connected to the Internet must be secured before bringing onto the network.