Dozens of US universities got victimized by neo-Nazi cyber attack. The black hat hacker “Andrew Auernheimer” proved that Internet of Things is as unsafe as allowing an intruder to stay in your house. With just two lines of code, Auernheimer tracked thousands of defenseless printers over the internet, and spread hatred and anti-Semitic message at large.
The news shocked global users, leading to massive posts, tweets and reports in the social media platforms. Students from big universities including University of Massachusetts Amherst, Mount Holyoke College, Smith College, Western Massachusetts, Northeastern University in Boston, Clark University and Brown University in Rhode Island, Princeton University, DePaul University and University of Southern California became victim of the massive cyber-attack.
When asked in chat Auernheimer stated, Internet is such a massive space that it wasn’t hard to detect vulnerable printers. Even more he assumed to detect more than those which he found.
Auernheimer was successful in gaining access over more than 20,000 printers of universities located in major states of US. Even more, Auernheimer claimed that he didn’t commit any crime. Instead he sent messages to printers which were configured to receive messages publically. All printers were equipped with port 9100, a dedicated port for network printers.
The incident has forced authorities to think again and revise the security policies of institutional systems. If printers can be targeted for racist fliers, then a user may assume about threats which student data posses in these systems. On other hand, iOTs are equipped with unpredictable cyber-threats. In past we have witnessed incidents when kids identities were exposed and a smart car was hacked by hacker. We need to improve digital security policies to protect our self in future.
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