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Panasonic Warns Internet-of-things Malware Attack Cycles Are Accelerating

The manufacturer is creating IoT honeypots to catch real-world threats

Internet-of-things (IoT) devices been plagued by security issues and unfixed vulnerabilities for more than a decade, fueling botnets, facilitating government surveillance and exposing institutional networks and individual users around the world. But many manufacturers have been slow to improve their practices and invest in raising the bar. At the Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas today, researchers from Panasonic laid out the company's strategy for improving IoT defenses based on a five-year project to gather and analyze data on how the company's own products are attacked.

The researchers use Panasonic home appliances and other internet-connected electronics made by the company to create honeypots that lure real-world attackers to exploit the devices. This way Panasonic can capture current strains of malware and analyze them. Such IoT threat intelligence work is rare from a legacy manufacturer, but Panasonic says it would like to share its findings and collaborate with other companies so the industry can start to compile a broader view of the latest threats across products.

“Attack cycles are becoming faster. And now the malware is becoming all the more complicated and complex,” said Yuki Osawa, chief engineer at Panasonic who spoke with WIRED ahead of the conference through an interpreter. “Traditionally, IoT malware is rather simple. What we are afraid of most is that some kind of a cutting-edge, most-advanced type of malware will also target IoT. So there is importance to protect [against] malware even after the product is shipped."

Please select this link to read the complete article from WIRED.

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