Looking forward to the new gadget from Santa Claus? Take these steps to protect it properly


Computers, computers, smart home appliances and hundreds of other internet-connected devices will be packaged under this holiday tree.

But you may not realize that new gadgets may pose a security risk, not just your personal data, but the infrastructure of the entire Internet.

According to a new Intel security company survey, 89% of canadians start using connected devices immediately after receiving the device, but only 44% of them take appropriate safety measures.

But it’s worth noting that 80 percent of Canadian consumers think it’s important to protect personal data online, and nearly half (48 percent) aren’t sure if they’re taking the right safety measures.

Gary Davis, chief consumer Security evangelist at Intel Security, said: “consumers are usually happy to use new devices as soon as possible and give up the Security of their devices.

“Cyber criminals can use this lack of focus on the way to collect consumer data, make consumers malicious software or identity theft, and even DDoS attack by using unsafe equipment, like the recent Dyn attack.

What many people may not realize is that unprotected “smart” devices are often hijacked by hackers for distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, just as Davis mentioned attacks.

In October Dyn, the domain name server (DNS) provider, was hit by a massive DDoS attack that led to its system offline and led to widespread outages including Twitter, Netflix, amazon, Spotify and Airbnb.

DDoS attacks are often used by hackers to overwhelm web sites by flooding websites with requests until their servers crash.

The attack, which is being investigated by the federal bureau of investigation and the U.S. department of homeland security, was carried out through the use of malware infections to connect to so-called “smart” devices connected to the so-called Internet of things.

This means that your wi-fi connection coffee machine or baby monitor can be used as a “cyber weapon” by hackers.

Read more: you need to know about network camera hackers, and how to prevent it

The hackers searched the devices by using a computer code to search for internet-connected devices by the manufacturer’s default Settings. In other words, if you’ve never changed the password of a gadget, you can be a target.

Although most consumers might not be too worried about their smart devices is used to plot to seize the domain name server, but it is important to note that these same lax security measures already allows hackers to intercept baby monitor and web camera feed.

You may remember, in 2015, a family of southwestern Ontario after baby guardian suddenly began to play the music, just call the police, said a voice, they are being watched, and one of the parents is shaking his baby sleep in a nursery. There is also a notorious website where hackers can intercept people’s webcams, watch and play with toys, and they are called their “slaves”.

Even more surprising, children’s wi-fi toys are at risk. The Intel security survey showed that 15 percent of canadians lack the knowledge of the risk of potential hackers for children’s toys.

How to protect and protect your cool new gadgets

If you’re opening a shiny new smart device this holiday, take the following steps to protect yourself:

For computers, tablets and smartphones, consider installing antivirus software or anti-malware. Make sure the software is up-to-date and you are using the latest operating system on the device to ensure that you have the best security.

Experts also suggest using secure wi-fi connection, that means making sure that you on the home network has a strong password, and the use is famous for its well-known poor safety caution when public wi-fi network.

Intel security recommends that you provide security, unique passwords for all devices, and use any biometric security feature (such as a fingerprint scanner) on the device whenever possible.

But some security experts worry that some smart devices, such as home safety devices, will make it hard for ordinary consumers to figure out how to change their password information.

“The problem with these special devices is that the user cannot change the password,” Flashpoint security expert Zach Wikholm said in an interview with KrebsOnSecurity. “The password is hardcoded into the firmware, and the tools that disable it do not exist.”

One thing you can do is change the password of your home router to better protect devices that use home wi-fi connections.

You should also make sure that your router installed the latest firmware update – you can go to the manufacturer’s web site (the Nexus, D – Link, etc.) to check whether there is any update, and check whether there is available to download.