Story image

Is the IoT putting Kiwis at risk?

New Zealand consumers are embracing IoT devices, but opening their homes to cybersecurity risks by not taking the proper measures to secure them. 

With an average of 26 connected devices in each household, often there are more devices at risk than most think. 

According to a new report by Trend Micro, IoT home devices, such as smart TVs and connected speakers (e.g. Alexa and the Apple HomePod) are increasingly being targeted by ransomware and used for cryptocurrency mining.

The 2017 Security Threats in the Home Network report found Trend Micro protected home networks globally from over 8.5 million attacks that attempted to connect to home devices last year, and also blocked over 6.7 million hits of ransomware-related site connections. 

Locally, 72,000 network threats were detected and blocked in ANZ.

The report found poor basic security such as an incorrectly configured home network, weak passwords, and lack of firmware were the factors in 2017 that opened doors to threats of the smart home.

Cryptocurrency was the single most detected network event in 2017, with over 45.6 million detections. 

Ransomware too saw huge spikes on home IoT devices in 2017 as WannaCry and Petya held consumers’ devices hostage.

The recent 2017 Mobile Threat Landscape report found that mobile exploits soared last year. 

Mobile ransomware rose by 415% percent globally in 2017 and Australia had 12,588 mobile ransomware detections alone.

Although a cybercriminal niche, mobile banking malware is also on the rise with 108,439 unique banking malware samples detected by Trend Micro in 2017, 94% more than 2016.

Home Network Security has blocked over 103,000 web threats locally in the past year.

Locally, 38.7% of web threats blocked by Home Network Security were on iPhones and iPads, 27.3% of web threats were blocked on laptops or PCs and, 18% were blocked on Android phones and tablets and 9.9% blocked on Macs.

Trend Micro blocked a total of 58,193,597 mobile threats globally in 2017.

Royole's FlexPai: So bendable phablets are a reality now
A US-based firm called Royole is delivering on that age-old problem of not being able to fold up your devices (who hasn't ever wished they could fold their phone up...)
Hands-on review: Having fun in Knowledge is Power: Decades and Chimparty
They don’t revolutionise social video gaming, but they are enjoyable enough to occupy you during a wet weekend. 
Kiwis losing $24.7mil to scam calls every year
The losses are almost five times higher compared to the same period last year, from reported losses alone.
Tile's Mate & Pro Bluetooth trackers land in NZ
If your car keys (or your tablet) have disappeared into the void at the back of the couch or if you left them somewhere in your car, retracing your steps to find them could be a thing of the past.
Government still stuck in the past? Not on GovTech's watch
What exactly is GovTech and what’s been happening in our capital city?
"Is this for real?" The reality of fraud against New Zealanders
Is this for real? More often than not these days it can be hard to tell, and it’s okay to be a bit suspicious, especially when it comes to fraud.
Hands-on review: The iPhone Xs
The iPhone Xs is a win that brought numerous new and exciting features to the market.
How much does your Amazon Prime Video subscription really get you?
For our NZ$8.90 per month, the average cost per title is US$0.00126 - but we only really get a choice of 416 TV shows and 4321 movies. Choice is a little bit limited compared to other countries.