In-brief: Electronics maker Vizio is the latest smart television brand caught harvesting the viewing habits of its customers and selling the data to advertisers, highlighting legal loopholes that connected devices are exploiting.
Researchers at Columbia University have published research showing how new technology that combines broadband and broadcast content could enable a wide range of traditional and novel cyber attacks on smart televisions and other devices: forcing them to interact with malicious web pages, harvesting credentials or carrying out denial of service attacks. The paper, published in May, explores potential attacks on combined broadcast-broadband devices that use an industry specification called Hybrid Broadcast-Broadband Television (HbbTV). According to the researchers, Yossef Oren and Angelos D. Keromytis, the HbbTV specification combines broadband technologies like HTML and broadcast features in an insecure manner. The vulnerabilities affect a wide range of smart entertainment devices, including smart televisions, in Europe and the United States. “This enables a large-scale exploitation technique with a localized geographical footprint based on radio frequency (RF) injection, which requires a minimal budget and infrastructure and is remarkably difficult to detect,” the researchers write. “The technical complexity and […]