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News Link • Hacking, Cyber Security

5 Ways Hackers Could Kill You Right Now

• Kelsey D. Atherton via
 The internet is abuzz with news that it is now possible to hijack an airplane with an Android. This arrives hot on the heels of an announcement that the Department of Defense is classifying some cyber capabilities as weapons. I'm pretty skeptical of all the fearmongering over cyberterrorism; as security threats go, cyber is one of the least deadly. But, thought experiment: If hackers really did want to spend their time, energy, and knowledge carrying out a deadly attack, how would they do it? Here are five possible, but highly improbable, scenarios. (Paging, Hollywood!)
Hacking Your Pacemaker

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The hack
Pacemaker-hacking feels like a Hollywood plot. Assassinate someone by taking over the medical device that controls his heart? Surely that isn't possible in the real world.

Actually, it's totally possible. Last year, a researcher demonstrated a pacemaker hack in Australia, with a virus that could conceivably spread from one person to every electronically assisted heart within 30 feet.

The threat level
Probably limited to assassination targets. Think: high-profile people, who have pacemakers. It would be an elaborate attack, though, since you need more than just an internet connection to pull it off. Odds are that anyone interested in doing this could get a bomb or a pistol to the target cheaper and faster. This is Hollywood not because it's impossible, but because it's not very efficient.


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