The documents revealed by WikiLeaks that indicate the Central Intelligence Agency has been sitting on a collection of spy-friendly software vulnerabilities are certainly intriguing. More worrisome, perhaps, is the question of who else knows about these security weaknesses.
Hackings are rarely discovered in a secure facility accessed only by spooks. They are more often than not found in the online bazaar of hackers and cyberweapons dealers trading security information for fun and profit. And the C.I.A. is hardly the only intelligence agency looking to acquire that information.
It is safe to say that intelligence and law enforcement authorities from most countries — not to mention a wide array of hackers — are on the lookout for ways to break into smartphones and other security devices.
So what should you do about it? The Times’s Brian X. Chen offers a few tips: First, update your software if you are using an iPhone or an Android phone. Most of the breaches described in the documents appeared to target older software. On your personal computers, also make sure you have the latest operating system and antivirus software. You should also update the firmware in your router.
The bad news? If hackers can really turn Samsung TVs into monitoring devices, there is no easy solution. Samsung says it is looking into the issue.
More tech news:
Uber says it will stop employees from using a program called Greyball to thwart regulators. In the wake of a New York Times article about the tool, which appeared to allow drivers to avoid officers in Oregon, the company said it was conducting a review of how it is used.
The White House has been echoing the tech world: “Move fast and break things.” Defying political norms, President Trump has embraced the philosophy of disruption and management styles that have powered successful start-ups.
Which smart home devices are best for you? The Wirecutter’s smart home editor explains how to sort through the choices for home automation.
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