Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales of smart TVs are likely prodigious this Thanksgiving weekend – but consumers need to be aware of the hole they can punch in home cyber-defenses. That’s the word from the FBI, which warned that smart TVs, which hook up to the internet to allow users to access apps and stream Netflix and other video services, can be gateways for hackers. “Hackers can take control of your unsecured TV,” according to the notice. “At the low end of the risk spectrum, they can change channels, play with the volume, and show your kids inappropriate videos. In a worst-case scenario, they can turn on your bedroom TV’s camera and microphone and silently cyberstalk you.” Smart TVs also present other security issues, such as the ability for hackers to compromise them to infiltrate home Wi-Fi setups and penetrate other devices on the network. “A bad cyber-actor may not be able to access your locked-down computer directly, but it is possible that your unsecured TV can give him or her an easy way in the backdoor through your router,” the bureau said in its notice, issued ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. While the FBI didn’t directly warn about botnets, it should be noted that Internet of Things (IoT) devices like smart TVs are popular targets for botherders, according to security researchers. “Many cyberattacks, like the Mirai malware and the Dyn attacks, infect a network of computers, including smart connected devices such as home appliances, security cameras,…
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