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Home » IoT devices pose a much bigger cyberthreat than you and I realize
Mashable Technology

IoT devices pose a much bigger cyberthreat than you and I realize

Like many others, you might think of cybercrime as a dark side-effect of the internet that somehow only affects large corporations or nations.

But Kaspersky Lab wants you to know how severe and personal it can be.

At the recent Kaspersky Lab Annual Cybersecurity Weekend in Cape Town, South Africa, the cybersecurity major revealed figures that showed how phishing attacks against individuals increased by 70% in the first quarter of 2019 across META (Middle East, Turkey, and Africa).

The UAE alone saw a 12% increase in malware attacks and a 20%increase in mobile malware attacks in comparison to the first quarter of 2018.

Kaspersky Lab predicts that the MENA region, in particular, will be the focus of cybercriminals, who would be further encouraged by the growing penetration of IoT (Internet of Things) devices in the region.

The region is seeing more significant use of IoT devices like smart cars, smart TVs, smart devices, all of whom are a gateway to tons of personal information and data.

Why will IoT devices, in particular, be soft targets to an increasing number of malicious acts? It is because hackers need to break into one device to grant themselves access to your entire network in one go.

Maher Yamout, senior security researcher at Kaspersky Lab, believes that IoT devices pose a more significant cybersecurity threat than people realize. He contends that while many IoT users may have the know-how of devices, they are oblivious to the risks that these devices bring to their private and financial lives.

Yamout adds that while one might not be able to prevent all attacks, you should be aware enough to detect them and build your digital walls. For this, he recommends simple steps that everyone can take.

  • The first is to avoid clicking on unknown, suspicious links. Always and forever. Phishing attacks have such a high success rate because hackers exploit the consumers’ curiosity.
  • The second is to use strong passwords. More than 90% of IoT attacks occur because users get lazy. Yamout suggests that we not only use password managers to generate complex combinations but also change our passwords every few months.
  • Lastly, users should be wary of personal assistants. As much as they were built to make our lives easier, because they are integrated into so many parts of our lives, the risk they pose automatically becomes higher.

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