Johnson Concerned About Security on New Internet Ready Appliances

Lake Havasu City, AZ – In what is being called the new Internet of Things (IoT) market, consumers are seeing new internet ready appliances coming out from different manufactures at an extremely fast pace. The International Data Corporation (IDC) expects IoT technology and services spending to generate global revenues of $8.9 trillion by 2020. Supervisor Buster Johnson is concerned that this new technology may lead to more cyber security breaches. “This is getting a little scary with all the things that are becoming subject to hacking,” Supervisor Johnson stated. Johnson, who is one of the First Vice Presidents of the National Association of Counties (NACo) Cyber Security Task Force, has seen the IoT market take off over the past five years with the invention of products such as the Nest and Kwikset’s new Kevo product.

“This new technology is going to change our everyday lives. With technology that will let us unlock our front door with our cell phone to refrigerators that keep track of inventory, someday soon nearly every appliance in our homes will come equipped with a computer chip. This new technology may be more convenient but at the same time it leaves us all vulnerable to cyber-attacks,” Johnson explained. The first major cyber-attack to be reported on internet ready appliances occurred late last year. According to researchers at Proofpoint, a provider of cloud-based solutions for threat protection, hackers broke into more than 100,000 everyday consumer gadgets between December 23, 2013 and January 6, 2014, such as home networking routers, connected multi-media centers, televisions, and at least one refrigerator. “Hackers are using these connected appliances as a new way to send malicious emails to enterprises and individuals worldwide,” Johnson stated.

One of the newest IoT gadgets on the market today is Kwikset’s new Kevo bluetooth electronic deadbolt lock that can open one’s front door by using an app on the user’s iPhone. “You use to know when someone broke into your home because they would usually kick in the door. With this new technology, an intruder could be in your home and you may never know,” Johnson ended.