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The Five Worst IoT Apps

IoT isn't all good news; there are many possible unfortunate uses.

· IoT Zone

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Survey people about what they would like to see more on TV and they all talk about inspiring movies, classical music, educational documentaries, etc. Look at their behaviour and they crave for more violence, gossip, sex, etc. So here are some of the worst IoT apps possible.

5. The Botnet Mafia App

Since your smart fridge is on the whole day, it is the dream for botnets. Mafias would love to orchestrate millions of smart devices and use them as spamming servers, bitcoin miners, drug trade anonymising tor nodes, etc.

4. The Fire Starter App

Have some connected smart lights or any other remotely controllable devices near? The fire starter app will turn it on/off tens of thousands of times per second with the sole objective for the device to provoke a fire.

3. The Accidental Blackmailer App

Your self-driving car all of a sudden locks its doors and starts driving without you being able to stop or control it. You hear a computer voice that tells you that in 1 minute you will need to agree to pay $10.000 worth of bitcoins to the author of the app, otherwise the car will have an unfortunate high speed accident.

2. The Bitcoin Sniper Drone App

All of a sudden an auto-piloted drone comes from nowhere and starts shooting at a specific person because on the dark web at least $5000 worth of bitcoins were assembled through anonymous crowd-funding to put a contract on this persons head.

1. The Terrorist App

A series of apps start controlling different smart devices in a coordinated terrorist attack. Traffic lights all turn to green, plane engines get switched off during flight, nuclear power plants are driven towards overheating, hospital equipment starts to give lethal doses of radiation and injecting overdoses of medicines, etc.

IoT can kill

Like any new technology there are people that want to use IoT for bad. There are bad individuals both in criminal organisations as well as in the governments that are there to protect you. The best defence is not to ban new technologies, e.g. in the 90’s the Internet was seen as the end of the world because pedophiles could hide their identity. Instead the best defence is to make technology starting from the assumption people are bad and applying state of the art security, app containment and transactional update technologies to minimise the risk and to open source it so more people can detect any bugs and potential vulnerabilities. Snappy Ubuntu Core assumes the worst and tries to avoid doom scenarios at all costs. There are lots of proprietary and closed IoT solutions that claim to be secure. However you don’t have access to their source code and as such you have to exercise trust. In the post-Snowden era, who can you trust?

The IoT Zone is brought to you in partnership with GE Digital.  Discover how IoT developers are using Predix to disrupt traditional industrial development models.


Published at DZone with permission of Maarten Ectors, DZone MVB. See the original article here.

Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.

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