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Cloud of Death: A Hacking Horror Story

We’ve said it once and we’ll say it again: the cloud is no place to store your passwords and sensitive data.

After all, that’s what drove us to develop our offline cloudless solution in the first place.

As more and more of the devices we use every day become connected to the cloud (joining the ever-expanding Internet of Things), we become more and more vulnerable to the whims of hackers, who can easily hijack these technologies for their own sinister intents.

But what if a hacker had no interest in your passwords or credit card details...

What if all they wanted to take was… your life.

Corey

Am I implying that a murderous hacker could actually use the cloud to kill you? Maybe!

How would such a scenario even play out, you ask? Well it might go a little something like this…

house-1

8:00 PM. Friday. You just got home from work a couple hours ago.

It was a rough day, so you wasted no time changing into your comfiest PJs, laying back on the sofa, and binging a couple episodes of your favorite series, as you do every Friday night.

Unfortunately, you’re not the only one doing the watching this evening.

Unknown to you, The Hacker has been spying on you for weeks now, carefully tracking your every move and habit. All through your laptop’s own webcam.

webcam

They’ve learned quite a bit from observing you: what time you wake up, what time you go to bed, what time you get home after work. Hell, they even know what episode you’re currently on.

Knowing that you’re just sitting at home tonight, not planning on going anywhere, they decide it’s time to pay you a little visit…

About an hour has passed. You’re two episodes in and pretty much settled down for the night. Nice and cozy.

Suddenly, the room starts to feel a little chillier than usual. Freezing even.

The Hacker is crouched down outside, hidden by the bushes, remotely cranking your thermostat down to unbearably frigid levels.

thermostat-4

Unable to deal with the cold anymore, you get up to investigate. Like a pawn in a game of chess.

Making their way to your front door, The Hacker walks right into your house, without a sound or a trace of damage. Your smart lock didn’t prove hard to bypass.

lock-1

As you’re busy turning the heat back up to a more tolerable level, The Hacker subtly whips out a smartphone and hits play on… nothing.

Or at least, it only sounds like nothing to the human ear. Your smart speaker hears those ultrasonic commands to turn off all the lights loud and clear.

speaker

The house goes pitch black, save for some traces of moonlight trickling in through an open window. Your heart begins to race.

"Oh shit. This is the part where the serial killer ambushes their hapless victim", you think to yourself, partly joking. Partly.

With a nervous gulp, you muster up the courage to turn around, just to put your overactive imagination at ease.

“See? Nothing” you say relieved. Right before an ominous hooded figure emerges from the shadows.

Checkmate.

checkmate

You let out a blood-curdling scream and make a mad dash across the room, grab your car keys, and bolt straight to your front door.

The Hacker casually walks out after you, not a hint of panic or urgency in their stride.

You unlock your vehicle and hop in, frantically pulling out of your driveway, speeding off in a frenzy.

You breathe a sigh of relief. Whoever that intruder back there was, they’re far away now. You’re safe. They can't get you.

You decide to pull over and collect yourself, carefully stepping on the brakes. But to your horror, your state-of-the-art connected car shows no signs of slowing down.

car

That’s because The Hacker has already taken control of it. Before you know it, the AC’s blasting, the windshield washers are spraying, and the radio's blaring at a deafening volume.

It's not long before your vehicle meets a tree, and you meet your untimely demise.

Just be glad you didn’t have a pacemaker...


Ok, so maybe this scenario is a bit exaggerated.

I’m not saying you need to go full-Luddite and smash all your electronics immediately, but it’s important to remember how scary things can get when your personal data and privacy aren’t properly handled by the developers of these devices and services we so readily put our trust behind.

That’s why it’s up to you to make cybersecurity a top priority in your day-to-day life, and a great password manager would be a damn good start!

Cloud of Death: A Hacking Horror Story
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