The Age reports on a zombie refrigerator, hacked by attackers and made to churn out "more than 750,000 malicious emails," making this the "first proven 'internet of things' based cyber attack involving 'smart' appliances."
Security experts previously spoke of such attacks as theoretical.
But Proofpoint said the case "has significant security implications for device owners and enterprise targets" because of massive growth expected in the use of smart and connected devices, from clothing to appliances.
"Proofpoint's findings reveal that cyber criminals have begun to commandeer home routers, smart appliances and other components of the internet of things and transform them into 'thingbots'", to carry out the same kinds of attacks normally associated with personal computers.
The security firm said these appliances may become attractive targets for hackers because they often have less security than PCs or tablets.
|The Secretclub: A quirky and fun way to meet new people on social networking sites|
|How Do Tech Companies Make Money?|
|The Growth of Corruption Reporting Websites|
|The Value of a Facebook User (RT @SaraCera)|
|“Session replay scripts collect can’t reasonably be expected to be kept anonymous.”|
|“Governments around the world are dramatically increasing their efforts to manipulate information on social media.”|
|When the Wrong Hastag Can Get You Killed by a Killer Drone|
|iotacons: Pixelated Art by Andy Rash|
|“A photograph of the last male northern white rhinoceros.”|
|“When automation starts displacing lawyers, accountants and bankers, then we might see some push-back.”|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|“A fraudster poses as an attractive woman and encourages a man to masturbate in front of a webcam.”|
|“Semis, not personal cars, are the smartest use of autonomous technology.”|
|“The homemade airplane does indeed fly!”|
|Short Story of Similar Objects|
|“Astronomers have sent a radio message to a neighbouring star system.”|