Remote workers facing cyberattacks on their routers

August 14, 2020

Recent research has shown that remote workers are facing a massive increase in brute force attacks on home routers and other consumer IoT devices.

TrendMicro has reported that various cybercriminals are in an ongoing battle to disrupt as many devices as possible to create an intensive set of botnets. According to their research, automated log-in attempts by cyber attackers rose from 23 million in September 2019 to nearly 149 million in March 2020.

Additionally, an increasing number of cyber attackers are targeting open telnet sessions between devices. These sessions, which are unencrypted, are easier to hack and can lead attackers to other devices or routers to infect.

Of course, this has increased significance as a large part of the workforce is currently working from home. Even if these workers go back to the office soon, businesses are increasingly looking to transfer data and systems to the cloud in an attempt to become more agile and prepare for a future situation where remote working may be necessary.

The consequences go beyond disruption as well – compromised devices and routers that are hacked and act as botnets could have their IP addresses blacklisted by their organisation’s corporate network or other parts of the internet. This could create lasting issues – both for the employee and their organisation, as well as the reputation of the company selling routers or IoT devices.

There are solutions that must be implemented on all sides to prevent more attacks on routers and consumer IoT devices. Firstly, remote workers must take certain cybersecurity measures into their own hands, such as setting strong passwords and consistently update their firmware.

After that, companies that sell routers and consumer IoT devices must ensure that they are building their products with security in mind – or else face increases in hacks and a hit to their reputation and sales.

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