Eli5: Is theoretically any device connected to the internet vulnerable to attacks from hackers?


Eli5: Is theoretically any device connected to the internet vulnerable to attacks from hackers?

In: Technology

Yes, theoretically and practically any device connected to the internet can be hacked, whatever level of security you use there is always a higher level hacking method maybe not figured out yet.

Security researcher here: Theoretically? No. Practically, absolutely.

If there’s a device out there connected to the internet, it likely has some services running on it, and due to the complexity of software development/networking/much more, no one person knows everything a device is doing. This is where criminal hackers come into play, by applying common research techniques as well as reverse engineering skills, they are able to develop exploits that take advantage of flaws in software and services.

The general rule in security is that “everything can be hacked”*, but the defensive idea is to make it so time consuming and not worthwhile for criminals to try and attack. No one wants to spend 2k hours trying to make your smart fridge warm(Well, at least most criminal hackers, I’d like to imagine(though I’m sure there’s a few out there!)).

This question makes me curious whether, conversely, it is possible in actual practice to 100% secure a device that is connected to the internet against hackers?

My father once told me ‘ the only computer thats safe from hacking is one that runs on batteries and sits in the middle of a large desert. ‘ this was in ’92.

Short answer? Yes. Long answer? Yessssssssssssssss.

But for real any device can be breached if there is access to it and a vulnerability. That could just be an exploit that hasnt been patched or even just a user doing something dumb like setting a password to “password”. It extends beyond just internet connected devices. Open Bluetooth? If someone is in range they might get into it.

Theoretically it’s possible to make a device that can’t be hacked. Someone has to find a way to hack it, which has to have been programmed into the device by mistake. If it has no mistakes, it can’t be hacked.

But a lot of devices have a crazy amount of code in them, which means they probably have a crazy amount of mistakes, and the hacker just needs to find one.