New IoT Botnet Threat: Hide & Seek Malware

We’ve been talking about the Internet of Things (IoT) for some time now, and although the possibilities associated with IoT are ever growing, so are the risks. Although IoT botnets are nothing new – remember when Hajime single-handedly took down numerous popular websites such as Amazon, Twitter, and Netflix across large swaths of the United States and Europe – there’s a new threat you should be aware of if you ever use IoT-enabled devices.

HNSMalware-300x171 New IoT Botnet Threat: Hide & Seek MalwareHide and Seek (HNS) malware has quietly been creating a robust botnet since early 2018 and has already recruited tens-of-thousands of IoT devices using advanced communications methods. What’s different about HNS (as compared to previously known botnets and IoT-targeted malware) is that this strain of malware cannot be removed by simply restoring the infected device to its original factory settings.

What this really means is that now more than ever, individuals and businesses using IoT-enabled devices need to take some immediate precautions to keep your data and network safe from bad actors. Here are a few proactive steps you can easily take to prevent an HNS (or other malware) attack.

  1. Always change network and device names and passwords from the factory default. It might seem very obvious, but you wouldn’t believe how many times we encounter infections where this simple step was skipped. Forgoing the creation of strong, unique passwords is like leaving the front door to your business unlocked when no one is there.
  2. Only keep IoT devices connected when they are actively in use. Otherwise, it is best to have them disconnected from the internet or better yet, turned off, as that is the only surefire way to ensure they cannot be infected.
  3. If your business has a large number and variety of internet-connected devices in use at any given time, take the extra precautionary step of installing a threat management system that will secure common entry points, block would-be intruders, and alert you to any potential threats before they infect your entire network.

If you’re unsure how exposed your devices and network might be when it comes to the Internet of Things (IoT), ATB encourages you to contact us and schedule a complimentary preliminary consultation with our team of experts. We can not only help you identify potential weak points in your current network, but we can work with you to create a customized defense strategy that meets your specific business needs. Hide and Seek malware and IoT botnets aren’t going anywhere. Are you protected?

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