Tuesday, October 12, 2021 by Mary Villareal
A recent report from cybersecurity researchers at Check Point identified a bug in Philips Hue smart bulbs that potentially allows hackers to access the home networks of users.
Using a similar glitch from 2017, researchers said that they were able to access the bulbs and their corresponding “control bridge,” which led them to the users’ home networks.
Though the process seems a bit difficult, the researchers said their work shows how it is possible for Internet of things (IoT) devices to expose crucial aspects of someone’s home network and beyond. In particular, their research demonstrates how even the most mundane IoT devices, such as smart light bulbs, can be exploited by hackers to plant malware or take over networks.
To infiltrate a network, the researchers first exploited a bug that remained active from a previous study, which allowed hackers to control aspects of a smart bulb, like its brightness. Once they gain control of the bulbs, hackers lower and raise its brightness in an attempt to trick the user into thinking that there is something wrong with the device and prompt them to reinstall it. Once the compromised bulb is reinstalled, it can offload malware to the “control bridge.”
Fortunately, Philips Hue was notified of the flaw in November 2019, and the company has since issued a patch for its products that should have been automatically downloaded.
Despite the fix, revelations about the vulnerabilities of smart bulbs should raise concerns over what kinds of devices people allow in their home networks. Individuals and organizations must protect themselves against these possible attacks by updating devices with the latest patches and separating them from other machines on their networks to limit the possible spread of malware.
“In today’s complex fifth-generation attack landscape, we cannot afford to overlook the security of anything that is connected to our networks,” the researchers said. (Related: How to Get Rid of Cyber Security Issues Almost Instantly.)
Many homeowners share the misconception that their home networks are too small to be at risk for a cyberattack, or that their devices are “secure enough.” Most attacks are not personal in nature and can occur on any type of network, so here are some tips to help improve security from malware and ransomware.
Learn more about how to keep yourself safe from internet attacks at Cyberwar.news.
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