Home > IOT, SmartHome > CES2015 – A festival of insecure, unmanaged IOT devices..

CES2015 – A festival of insecure, unmanaged IOT devices..

The Internet of Things (IOT) and “smart devices” were THE big thing at CES this year – the show was flooded with novel gadgets from every manufacturer – from smart connected coffee makers, health tracking devices, fire alarms, home security systems, and even vehicles which some are considering the next “wearable”.

CES behemoth Samsung’s CEO Boo-Keun Yoon spent a significant portion of their keynote reminding us that IOT “is not science fiction anymore. It’s science fact” – something I can attest to with a significant number of their devices in my own home.

Everywhere you looked, there was either an IOT device, something that “IOT’s” your devices, or something that manages them – and of course in the Intel booth, we also devoted a significant portion of our time talking about how to manage and secure them.

I mentioned the security problems these devices pose to us in previous blogs (and promised this update)  – One rogue device which has a privileged connection to your home network can act as a spy and launching point for more nefarious attacks. There’s also the problem of “chatty” devices consuming significant portions of your (expensive) bandwidth – something my home in particular suffers from, with historically about 30% of our upstream bandwidth used by various gadgets having seemingly pointless conversations with their home servers.

How many times a day do your lights need to look for firmware updates?

Here at Intel security we are still, and always have been dedicated to our vision of making you secure in your personal and business digital world – and my belief is that can’t be achieved when you’re surrounded by tiny simplistic IOT devices which have no capacity to deeply integrate and cooperate with a robust security ecosystem. To solve that we are demonstrating how the power of the Intel Security Global Threat Intelligence system, when coupled with Intel Service Provider Division’s Cable modem gateways can protect all the devices in your home, both traditional tablets, Pcs, an their IOT brethren by blocking access to the bad side of the internet.

Even if the devices are impenetrably secure (a heady goal given the speed to market and performance constraints), people are still vulnerable to phishing and social engineering attacks, and of course there’s always the risk that some advanced malware which takes over a PC, can reprogram your door locks, or photo frame – STUXNET for the home if you will.

Stripping bad content out at the network level, and informing homeowners in a simple and understandable way as to what’s happening is the best solution by far – and though the problem is new, network inspection and filtering technology has been battle tested and refined in the corporate world for 20 years.

What’s new, is making that concept simple enough for everyone, and downsizing it into the little black box your Internet comes through.

Our solution to this? Put the smart device management in something every smart home has – the internet gateway.

You may not realize this, but if you’re a cable internet customer, there’s a better than evens chance your cable service is plugged into an Intel powered modem, and these devices have all the CPU power we need to provide a fully filtered, family controlled internet experience.

At CES we demoed protecting Windows RT and iOS devices from inappropriate content, malware and phishing sites, detecting “zombie” like activity, and a Kiosk experience (where the devices could only connect to named sites) – all without adding any software to the devices themselves, or even configuring them in any special way. We even demoed how parents could use our “You’re Grounded!” feature to disable all a child’s devices with one click.

For the carriers we showed them technology which can help with customer support problems – being able to identify badly behaving devices in the home, bandwidth hogs etc, even showing how we can identify unusual activity, like if your Internet connected refrigerator starts sending email..

Of course, this tech is not limited to Intel Puma devices – it works on many other platforms as well, but because of the processing power of the x86 chipset, at the moment things are better with “Intel Inside”.

Our goal has always been to protect every device in the home, and your online experience regardless of what device you use – If you saw our demo at CES2015 I hope you agree we’re another step closer to making this a reality.

Categories: IOT, SmartHome Tags: , ,
  1. January 16, 2015 at 11:12

    Reblogged this on Elle Hunt.

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