Pwnie Express: Beware The Internet Of Evil Things

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Threat detection specialists at Boston-based Pwnie Express have released their second annual list of ’Internet of Evil Things.’

So what makes a connected device evil? CRNtv sat down with Pwnie Express' product manager, Yolanda Smith, to discuss just that.

’What we are finding is that most people, as they’re going through their space and as new devices are coming into their environment – whether or not they’re on their network or just around their network – they’re coming into their environment in an uncertain state,’ Smith said. ’It could be vulnerable, it could be misconfigured, it could just be on when they don’t recognize that it’s on.’

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That last statement may sound innocuous, but not so much if a patient walks into a psychiatry session expecting confidentiality, and an Amazon Echo is unknowingly recording every conversation because it’s been left on.

The report contains some startling numbers: Eighty-nine percent of wireless and wired device users cannot detect or monitor Bluetooth devices on their networks, and 71 percent cannot monitor off-network Wi-Fi devices in real time. When it comes to IoT, 56 percent fail to monitor IoT devices connected to their networks in real time.

’At Pwnie Express, we believe that you can’t defend against what you can’t see,’ Smith said. ’The first key is just to understand what’s in your environment.’

Smith said real-time asset discovery is essential in today’s threat landscape.

’So we recommend that you start there,’ she said.