Are you a proud owner of a Smartwatch, a Smart TV, a Smart fridge, a Smart lock, an Internet-enabled car, or live in a smart city?
Recently, it has been reported that the growth of the Internet of Things would eventually lead to cyber criminals in making lots of money, as they started attacking the Internet of Things for Ransom.
Yes, the latest Interest of the cyber criminals in the field of Internet of Things is ‘Ransomware’.
Internet of Things (IoT) such as Android and iOS-based wearable Smartwatches and the concept of connected homes has now given a treat to the current generation Ransomware.
With the advancements in Technology, cyber criminals are simultaneously promoting themselves from the threat known for restricting computers or encrypting files and asking users for money in return for gaining back access to their systems.
From computers to mobile phones, now criminals are targeting the IoT and the wearables devices.
Security researchers at Symantec demonstrated how an Android Wear device might be impacted by typical Android ransomware.
In order to conduct this test, the researchers simply repackaged a current Android ransomware app (.apk file) – dubbed “Android.Simplocker”, inside a new Android Wear project.
Next, they took a Moto 360 Smartwatch and paired it with an Android phone. When they installed the new .apk file on the phone, they found that the phone became infected with the ransomware.
As the Smartwatch and an Android phone are required to be paired via Bluetooth for wireless connectivity, the ransomware also got pushed onto the smartwatch once the pairing of both the devices were done.
Once installed on the smartwatch, the malware could be easily activated by the user if they were tricked into running it, by clicking on a malicious app.
After installation, the ransomware will cause the smartwatch to become unresponsive and unusable!
Simplocker Android ransomware then checks for the display of the ransom message every second, and if it is not shown, will push it onto the screen again.
In addition, Simplocker encrypts a range of different files stored on the smartwatch’s SD card.
Now, you must be thinking of escaping from the situation?
You can recover from this situation, but unfortunately, it involves a factory reset of your smartwatch.
But there also stands a condition where the rebooting of the device through hardware buttons is possible, then quickly navigating to the factory reset setting (within 20-30 seconds) before the ransomware is rebooted.
According to Symantec, while this would erase all files on the smartwatch, those files would have been encrypted by the malware in the first place.
For this one needs to keep an updated backup.
As, in the past it was evident how smart Televisions got attacked with the ransomware also IoT devices being remotely controlled by the attacker.
Therefore, the crux is that the users need to be more vigilant and even smarter than the technology they are dependent on.