Report: CIA Fears the Internet of Things |

A story by Patrick Tucker over at picks up on some comments from Dawn Meyerriecks, the deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency’s directorate of science and technology regarding the agency’s thinking about the Internet of Things.

A CIA official speaking at the Aspen Institute
A CIA official speaking at the Aspen Institute’s Forum last week said the agency is worried about the threat posed by Internet of Things devices.

Meyerriecks was speaking at The Aspen Institute’s Security Forum on Thursday of last week in a panel on “The Future of Warfare.” Speaking about the topic of cyber warfare, she said that current debates about the shape of cyber war don’t address the “looming geo-security threats posed by the Internet of Things.”

Meyerriecks cited the now-debunked Proofpoint report about smart refrigerators being used in spam and distributed denial of service attacks.” She also mentioned “smart fluorescent LEDs [that are] are communicating that they need to be replaced but are also being hijacked for other things.”

Those might be some sensational (and dubious) examples, but Meyerriecks main point was more pedestrian: that we’re on the cusp of disruptive changes – but that those changes have been brewing for a long time.

“The merger of biological and cyber, those will be viewed as disruptors although we all know they’ve been invested in for decades at this point,” she said. As an example, she observed that, for mobile devices, “When it goes from the brick to something I can’t leave my house without, then it’s disruptive.”

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