Six security threats you need to know about

Are you getting tired of hearing about ransomware and other forms of malware?

Sometimes it can seem like almost every month, a new, more dramatic form of ransomware has emerged for you to worry about, only for it to fall back into the shadows a few days later.

Of course malware, ransomware, viruses, and phishing should still be taken very seriously, but don’t forget to keep your eyes and ears open for some security threats that can affect you in perhaps surprising circumstances.

Check out the 6 scary security threats that you should know about…but most likely don’t:


Your car

Cars are so much more than pieces of hardware these days, with technology embedded in smart-sensors, cameras, CarPlay, vehicle tracking software, GPS and more… Which is all great at making your journey a more connected experience, but creates numerous touchpoints for your data to be intercepted.

A few years ago, hackers demonstrated that they could remotely hijack a Jeep over the internet - forcing it to come to a complete stop whilst mid drive. Scary right? Even worse, the hackers could also easily disable the brakes or turn the steering wheel, rendering the driver at a complete loss of control. 

Whilst this may be a slightly extreme example, the reality is that by having open networks, you create vulnerability. So be careful about what you connect where, and what information you have available on your devices.


All your Bluetooth devices

Bluetooth’s great, right? Just by keeping the connection on your phone open you can easily link to FitBits, your aforementioned car, portable speakers and headphones etc. But ever heard of bluejacking or bluebugging?

These are methods that directly target that open connection on your phone to send mobile phone specific viruses, remotely access your phone and therefore using its features including making calls and sending texts, and/or hack your account and stored passwords.

And look at BlueBorne, a vulnerability that gave hackers a way to easily gather your personal information through smart home devices such as Amazon Alexa or Google Home – and that even nearly two years later has still left some devices exposed.


Your screen

By now you’re probably aware that hackers have the ability to hijack webcams and remotely record video / take pictures. Luckily, a post-it note or piece of electrical tape over the webcam normally alleviates that worry.

But screens as a whole are getting more advanced, and with that they are also becoming another loophole to exploit.

In 2017 it was discovered that security experts could hack into a popular Dell monitor and manipulate what you see on screen. So what? Well, hackers could use this vulnerability to make you think you are seeing things that you’re not, such as fake bank account pages. And what’s worse, because this exploit involves your monitor directly, most antivirus software and other forms of cyber protection will have no way of detecting it.


Mobile apps

From accessing the microphone, camera, and location of your phone, to building convincing app ‘clones’, hackers have a whole host of devious methods to try gain access to, and then exploit, personal information of unsuspecting mobile app users.

For example in 2017, a threat known as Eavesdropper was discovered that affected hundreds of Android apps and exposed tonnes of personal data - including private text messages and call records.



Yes, even lifesaving equipment can be hacked and used against you. This one hits a bit too close to home, so we’ll swiftly move on… (but read the article if you dare!)

Your laptop battery

Surely batteries are pretty safe in the grand scheme of things? But think about it – they’re everywhere, and can actually be hacked quite easily.

All laptop batteries contain microcontrollers that are designed to monitor voltage and keep your battery safe – and these microcontrollers are vulnerable.

One security researcher went as far as saying that with this vulnerability, you could essentially cause the battery to overheat or even explode…turning your fancy MacBook into a bomb. But that was in 2011 and it’s not become a mainstream issue…yet.


Is my only hope then to live in the woods and go completely off the grid?

No! The point of these stories isn’t to give up hope, but rather to remember that as the world gets smarter, there are more security threats to think about.

Remember to follow security best practices, like keeping your devices and apps updated, change your passwords often, and be on the lookout for any suspicious activity with your devices. So if your car starts driving away without you in it…give the dealership a ring and let them know.

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Read the original post from IT Weapons here: