Beware the Spam King; Spam May Be Coming to a Fridge Near You


A Las Vegas man faces up to three years in prison for sending more than 27 million unsolicited messages through Facebook Inc. servers after hacking into about 500,000 compromised accounts on the social network. Known as the “Spam King,” Sanford Wallace admitted to his spamming spree that lasted from 2008 to 2009. 

Speaking of spam, SPAM is a canned precooked meat product that can remain fresh (?) for a very long time. That kind of SPAM has one thing in common with electronic spam: it’s not something normally associated with refrigerators. 

That doesn’t mean that spam will stay out of your fridge.

At the recent DEF CON Hacking Conference, research group Pen Test Partners were able to hack into Samsung’s smart fridge, which features a tablet-like interface that can display a user’s Gmail calendar. According to Pen Test Partners, the “man-in-the-middle” attacks could allow hackers to steal the fridge user’s Gmail credentials. Last year, a hacked refrigerator and other smart appliances were used to send “waves” of more than 750,000 malicious spam e-mails. It was allegedly the first proven Internet of things-based cyberattack.

In January, Federal Trade Commission Chairwoman Edith Ramirez warned of “immense” consumer privacy risks posed by the Internet of things. The same month, the FTC released a report urging best practices to address data privacy and security concerns. The FTC report recommended that companies build security into devices during the design process, rather than as an afterthought. According to the report, there will be 25 billion connected devices as of this year and 50 billion devices by 2020.

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