Tunnels? Today's Jailbreaks Need Hackers

Security experts warn about vulnerable computer systems
By Sarah Whitmire,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 13, 2011 12:41 PM CDT
Forget Tunnels, Today's Jailbreaks Need Hackers
It's a cyber jailbreak!   (Shutterstock)

A prison warden's worst nightmare came true a few years ago: A freak power surge opened every death row inmate's door at the same time. All ended well, but a security engineer recounts the anecdote to the Huffington Post to highlight a scary vulnerability of modern prisons controlled by computers: the potential for cyber jailbreaks, either by accident or through the work of hackers. Researchers demonstrated how easy it can be at the recent Internet security conference in Vegas.

Even a small user mistake, such as a prison security guard checking email and unknowingly clicking a malicious link, can lead to trouble. The low pay of most guards doesn't help, says one security expert worried about the potential for bribery. But, he adds, "basic cyber hygiene" can go a long way. "If the prisons change their security procedures, they could probably fix the problem 98% on their own." Click for the full story. (More cyberattack stories.)

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