At ETV Software, one of the things we do is help companies in Tyler and East Texas set up their wired and wireless networks. We also help them set up other devices such as printers, scanners, backup systems, and security camera systems.

This last category, security cameras, along with other “smart” Internet enabled “Internet of Things” devices play a surprisingly large role in attacks massive distributed Internet attacks. Many, many Internet enabled web cameras and security cameras are sold each year, and a disturbingly large portion of these cameras ship in a state that makes them far too easy for hackers to compromise. Some ship with known passwords to their settings pages while others ship with no password at all!

What’s the harm in a hacker getting access to a few security cameras? Well, Internet cameras these days have a lot in common with older Android or Apple iPhones. They are mini-computers that just focus on doing one thing like recording video. Individually, they are not very powerful, but if hacked they can run whatever commands the hacker wants them too, and when grouped together by the thousands and pointed at a single target, they can seriously affect the connectivity of even the largest businesses.

Though it seems odd, webcams aren’t the only targets hackers are increasingly going after. There are several models of routers that can be targeted, as well as sillier things like Internet enabled refrigerators and dishwashers and light bulbs and coffee pots that can all be compromised. Once taken over, their small amounts of computing power can directed at a target of a hacker’s choice. Here’s a blog post from a company that protect other companies from web attacks that talks about the massive, debilitating amount of traffic some 50,000 web cameras can cause if they all work to flood the same target with Internet requests.

The takeaway here is that it’s not enough to simply set up your home or business network and your Internet connected devices and think you’re done with them. You need to make sure the things on your network are set up properly and as secure from outside hacking attempts as they can be. If left in their default state, even something as simple as a company webcam could eat through your Internet bandwidth as it helps attack someone somewhere else in the world.

And that’s where we come in. Not only can we help you set up your network, our technicians can help you make sure it starts out secure and do periodic checkups to make sure your devices, from your computers, printers, to your webcams and even your fancy smartphone controlled coffee pots, stay secure.

Want to know more? Give us a call at 903-531-0377 or send us an email to info@etvsoftare.com. You can also visit our website at www.etvsoftware.com.