Hackable gifts can be secured, Intel says

Intel’s Chief Consumer Security Evangelist Gary Davis warns that some of the most popular gifts this holiday season are also among the most hackable.

Davis, who writes a blog for the chip-making giant’s security arm, offered some advice Tuesday on how to make some of these gifts more secure.

For starters, think about what a hacker might want to hack. Wearables? No one wants to know your resting heart rate or how many stairs you climbed today, so what’s the problem?

But aren’t fitness bracelets and other wearables connected to your smartphone? Haven’t you created a little highway to your most valuable data by wearing one?

Another worry: Some Bluetooth devices often use default passwords like “0000” which cybercrooks can use to pair with a device, using it to spread malware, Davis wrote in his blog.

Drones are hackable, too. Davis advises people to follow the device’s instructions and change factory passwords immediately.

Children’s toys are another one. Parents need to understand how a toy connects with the online world, Intel said. If it connects to your home network, change the default password and manage the settings.

So this holiday, when you get one of these gifts, change default passwords, keep software up to date and protect your “core” devices,” Davis wrote.

Photo: Illustration (KRT Archives)


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