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Hijacked Nest devices highlight the insecurity of the IoT
People who purchase Internet of Things (IoT) devices, such as Nest thermostats and security cameras, likely don't realize the potential problems that can arise if the services go down, like they did recently with Nest thermostats — making it impossible to keep a house warm in winter or cool in summer. Nor are they aware that hackers could take control of their devices if they don't follow smart password practices, such as not reusing passwords or failing to set up two-factor authentication (2FA). But they are learning the hard way. Recently a family had their Nest camera hijacked, and the hacker had it blare fake warnings about North Korean intercontinental ballistic missiles heading for the U.S. Then there's the Texas couple who, in December, heard “sexual expletives” coming from the Nest Cam baby monitor in their 4-month-old son’s room. The mom, Ellen Rigney, said, “So we turned on the light in our room, we turned that camera on, and he told us to turn off the light and said I’m going to kidnap your baby — I'm in your baby’s room.” Thankfully there was not actually a kidnapper in their baby’s room.
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