Dark Web Hackers Turn to Internet Connected Gas Pumps

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Hackers have been long targeting Internet of Things devices as more of these devices become available. Recently, a smart device caught their attention.

Routers were the most targeted device till now but there’s a change in the trend and the hackers are now focusing on an internet-connected gas pump. The latest target was found by the researchers at Trend Micro who analyzed various dark web marketplaces in more than 5 different languages including Russian, Portuguese, English, Arabic, and Spanish.

Reports suggest that there is active participation from the Russian actors with regards to sharing information on how to hack gas pumps. Also, several tutorials are available online on the workings of commercial pumps including programmable logic controllers that are often found in industrial spaces which help in managing the equipment remotely.

“There are a number of additional threat scenarios that could possibly play out. This includes reconnaissance to find out the delivery schedule, extortion that involves blocking the owner's access in exchange for a certain sum, and even sabotaging the gas pump by adjusting tank limits so that it overflows,” stated Bharat Mistry, principal security strategist at Trend Micro.

A backup plan should be kept and in a functional condition in case the online systems fail. In addition, patches and security updates should be regularly monitored to ward off these hackers.