IoT / Mirai cyber attack causes internet problems for 900,000 German users
Mirai cyber attack causes internet problems for 900,000 German users
22 December 2016 |
As many as 900,000 German internet users were knocked offline this weekend by the latest attack related to the Mirai botnet.
According to Deutsche Telekom, hundreds of thousands of its customers faced connection issues and internet outages on Sunday and Monday as a result of the cyber attack.
The firm's head of IT security, Thomas Thchersich, told Der Tagesspiegel that the incident was a failed attempt to hijack customers' routers to use as part of the Mirai botnet.
Deutsche Telekom has since issued patches for three of its affected routers.
Mirai, a type of malware used to gain control of Internet of Things (IoT) devices, was used in the recent distributed denial of service attack on DNS provider Dyn, which disrupted popular services and websites including Amazon, Netflix and Spotify.
Cyber security experts have warned that if the IoT is not properly secured, the world could see an increasing number of attacks against critical infrastructure systems.
“The new wave of cyber attacks is around disruption,” Peter Tran, general manager and senior director at RSA’s Worldwide Advanced Cyber Defense Practice told Business Reporter at the RSA Conference 2016 in Abu Dhabi. “[Dyn] was an example of the power of disruption to attack our infrastructure. Anything that is internet-enabled is a risk.”
It has been estimated that nearly 200 million IoT devices are vulnerable to hacking, and manufacturers have been warned that security needs to be considered at the earliest stages of product development to avoid such flaws.
“When you build a device, as an industry that threat modelling needs to happen at the start of the process, not the end,” Huawei’s European cyber security officer David Francis said at the FT Cyber Security Summit. “It needs to be built in, not bolted on.”
Experts have even warned that cyber attacks on connected infrastructure in smart cities – including energy and transport systems – could put public safety at risk.
And researchers have predicted that cyber criminals will increasingly attempt to install backdoors on connected devices in 2017 to use as part of more sophisticated attacks.
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