When it comes down to hacking... not even your coffee maker is safe!
Yes… you read that correctly… with the increase of “smart appliances,” hackers are getting very creative into finding different ways of accessing your network.
This issue first surfaced in 2015 when researchers in a London-based security firm discovered that they could recover a Wi-Fi encryption key used in the first version of the Smarter iKettle. Not stopping there, they also found that version 2 of the same product and the current- version of the Smarter coffeemaker had additional issues, these included no firmware in place and no trusted enclave inside the ESP8266, which is the chipset that acts as the brain of the device.
What does that really mean? You might ask. Well, basically researchers believe that a hacker could come in, replace the factory firmware, and swap it out with a malicious one.
As an experiment, Martin Hron, a researcher at AVAST reversed engineered one of the older coffee makers to find out what it could really do and to their surprise, the answer was: A lot! He found out that he could access the coffeemaker, turn on the burner, spin the bean grinder, dispense water and display a ransom message, among other things, all while beeping repeatedly.
This serves as a reminder to make sure your network is fully protected, malicious actors are always lurking around and finding new ways to access your network, even if it is through that awesome coffee machine that can do magical things because it’s connected through your wifi.