The world of threats expanded dramatically in 2017—and not just because of an increase in the amount of malware. Organizations are dealing with larger attack surfaces. Exploits of the Internet of Things (IoT) devices have transitioned from speculation to reality.

IoT and critical infrastructure risks, and using malware and ransomware not only for data ex-filtration but data alteration are rising.  The typical enterprise performs only limited testing before deploying new devices and has no way of independently validating their performance in operation. The net result? Every new device adds to an organization’s potential attack surface: multi-site offices, physical and cloud, and all devices connecting to the network become potential entry points.

In its 2017 Data Security Threat Report, Verizon reports 75% of the breaches are perpetrated by outsiders.  Over 51% of breaches included malware, 21% of breaches were related to espionage.  Almost all verticals were infected with malware.  With the Mirai attack in October 2016, ransomware attacks in August 2017, Blueborne vulnerabilities in September 2017, billions of IoT devices were easily compromised, creating the largest, widest, and one of the easiest attack vectors to date.

These attacks have impacted 96% of healthcare organizations and global companies, like, Netflix, and Airbnb. These attacks are not an anomaly, Today, we are watching the mysterious Hajime and Persirai botnets spreading through brute force attacks on IoT devices.

These recent vulnerabilities in Bluetooth (Blueborn) and Zigbee indicate that IoT device exploits have transitioned from speculation to reality.