Ransomware is a type of computer attack that wreaked havoc last year. It is about encrypting the data of a computer, so that the user cannot access their files without a password. The only way to recover the data is to pay (usually with cryptocurrencies, and it is not always reliable) to the responsible cybercriminals to deliver the password and the system can be accessed again.
Ransomware, which consists of hijacking the data of a device and releasing it by paying a ransom, not only affects computers
But it has now been demonstrated in the Def Con, the annual hacking conference that is taking place in Las Vegas (United States), that computers are not the only devices exposed to such attacks.
A security researcher showed that digital cameras (with their photo load of presumably great sentimental value) are especially vulnerable to ransomware attacks.
The researcher demonstrated this vulnerability with a Canon EOS 80D camera, but it is probably not a specific model failure. In fact, all cameras that have WiFi connectivity (something increasingly common), are potentially vulnerable.
The attack is achieved by tricking the user and having him install fake firmware updates that actually contain the virus in question. Thus, the photos would be locked and the camera screen would show a warning suggesting the user to make a payment if he wants to recover his photos.
The solution? In addition to ensuring that the manufacturer’s official firmware is downloaded, turn off the WiFi and Bluetooth when it is not being used.
Even so, the findings found in Def Con have been communicated to Canon, who are working on a security patch to mitigate this vulnerability, which will be included in an update that users should download. In any case, this could affect not only cameras of that brand, but any other.