When ransomware hits your pacemaker

It’s one thing when your data gets locked up and you’re presented with a money demand to unlock it. It’s entirely another when the email threatens to switch your pacemaker off.

From a ‘ground breaking’ first in 2009, apparently millions of these devices are now internet connected, beaming data out so remote experts can keep your heart ticking. Only in 2017, we have now heard of a hole allowing malicious users to get back in.

Never mind.

It’s only a small hole. They’re going to patch it. Don’t worry.

Actually, I don’t have one yet. I’m worried about my Internet of Things (IoT) connected deep freeze. It’s full of frozen fish. I’ve heard tales. The fish thaw out, then begin to decompose. Cut a long story short, you come home from holiday and you need a new deep freeze. Hopefully you left it in the garage because evidently the stink permeates anything close by.

And it all happened in 2021 because I had gone out of cell range and didn’t read the ransomware note giving me 24 hours to respond before they switched the power off.

Of course this is mythical. By 2021, the whole nation will be in cellphone range. I just happened to be in Fiordland National Park. What with the fact the house was IoT perimeter controlled via the GPS proximity of my smartphone, it took my only sixty minutes to work out that the best workable strategy was to pay the $100 they were asking—via my smartphone outside a park hut.

Somehow they had worked out I was a long way from home. Maybe that had something to do with all that technology in my SUV?