Not too long ago, we talked on this site about Brickerbot, a new type of malware targeting Internet of Things devices. Although it was a bit unclear at that time as to how powerful this malicious software could be, it appears there is legitimate cause for concern. In fact, the author responsible for creating this tool now claims he successfully bricked two million IoT devices already. That is quite a spectacular amount, although that is mainly due to horrible security found on most Internet of Things devices these days.
Brickerbot is Far More Dangerous Than Assumed
Although any claims by a malware author should always be taken with a grain of salt, the Brickerbot malware is quite potent, to say the least. Janit0r, the person who is deemed to be responsible for this new IoT malware, has recently unveiled some intriguing statistics on the Hack Forums discussion boards. Everyone who is unaware of what Brickerbot does may want to check out our previous coverage of the topic first.
Rendering IoT devices utterly useless is a very serious threat to the whole Internet of Things ecosystem. Security researchers are not entirely sure if any device is safe from harm at this point, although manufacturers are well aware of the problem posed by Brickerbot. After all, it is not in anyone’s best interest to leave devices vulnerable to rewriting the flash storage space of a device with gibberish information. A firmware reinstall in the only solution to unbrick devices, although most IoT devices will need to be replaced altogether in the end.
The information leaked by Janit0r leaves security experts quite concerned, though. He claims over 2 million devices have been successfully bricked by his malware so far. That is quite a spectacular amount, considering Brickerbot has only been public knowledge for a few weeks. Then again, Janit0r claims he has been successfully using the malware since November of 2016.
This once again goes to show security experts are well behind the curve when it comes to sniffing out new threats. These people do everything they can to identify new threats around the clock, but it has simply become impossible to keep tabs on everything that is going on. Brickerbot has only appeared on the radar in March of this year, even though it seemingly has been around for six months or longer. That is quite troublesome, as it means billions of devices may be vulnerable to this malware right now.
It appears this Janit0r person may, in fact, be the Brickerbot developer. One of his posts on the bulletin board discusses a security flaw found in second and third generation IP cameras developed by a company called Dahua. It is evident this type of device has been infected with the Brickerbot malware at some point, although no one is for sure how many devices may have been bricked in the process. Rest assured this is not the last anyone has heard of Brickerbot malware.
One thing that remains a bit unclear Is whether or not other people have access to this bricking malware as well. Janit0r claims his source code has not been leaked so far, but that doesn’t mean he is the only one controlling it right now. Internet of Things devices are one of the biggest security risks our online society has ever faced, and it has become painfully obvious manufacturers are to blame for these lackluster security precautions.
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