WootCloud Launches New Initiative to Identify IoT Cybersecurity Threats


WootCloud Labs would be collaborating with IoT companies to alert the wider IoT community of these vulnerabilities for preventing attacks before they occur.


WootCloud, an innovative IoT cybersecurity company, has announced a global research initiative to help the OpenSource and IoT community identify IoT cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

As part of this initiative, WootCloud Labs, the research division of WootCloud, is addressing a mission critical need for businesses worldwide. Using Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Neural Network technology, WootCloud Labs is conducting highly detailed research and analysis to identify IoT (Internet of Things) threats that have historically gone undetected.

WootCloud Labs would be working with IoT organizations and companies to alert the wider IoT community of these vulnerabilities for preventing attacks before they occur.

“With so many smart devices available in the wild, device sprawl is rampant and creates an environment that is becoming more and more inviting for attackers,” said Srinivas Akella, founder and CTO of WootCloud.

“At WootCloud Labs our goal is to deliver actionable insights to the IoT community, empowering businesses with the information they need to get ahead and stay ahead of a wide range of vulnerabilities, exposures and exploits. We are looking forward to continuing to collaborate with organizations to deliver research and analysis around a wide variety of impending threats,” he added.

Expanding IoT ecosystem

According to Juniper Research, the number of IoT connected devices may reach 38.5 billion in 2020 and spending on IoT cybersecurity solutions is expected to increase to over $6 billion globally by 2023.

WootCloud Labs aims to help enterprises and security firms get ahead of and detect new threats that exist in the rapidly expanding IoT ecosystem.

The research team at WootCloud Labs has identified and ethically disclosed numerous new threats over the past year. These include the following:

  • The presence of three new botnet families on Polycom HDX systems, both mimicking the behaviour of the Mirai botnet. The malware families are a version of the Bushido and Hades Bots. WootCloud Labs detected the infections in the Asia region. A number of Polycom devices were found to be running the discovered bots, which performed brute-force and password cracking operations from the device via the telnet interface. APIs supported by Polycom devices are abused by the attackers for performing unauthorized operations on the device.
  • The OMNI botnet, which harnesses the power of open open-source software packages such as “BusyBox,” WGet” and others that shipped with the embedded firmware of the Polycom devices. OMNI bypasses the various authentication mechanisms and enables a complete takeover of the target device. It also enables the attackers to launch brute-force attacks and DDoS attacks and allow conferencing systems to act as proxy devices for routing malicious communications such as Command and Control (C&C).
  • More than 200,000 Cisco routers running with exposed web administrative panels. Exposed routers could become potential targets for malware authors to compromise these devices and use the same for forming botnets. Compromised routers can be used for building botnets to trigger unauthorized operations such as launching brute-force attacks, bitcoin mining, building hidden proxy tunnels, and many others. WootCloud Labs’ research reflected the risk of allowing administrative web consoles to be exposed on the Internet, as they can be accessible by remote users without any restriction.

“In a climate where more than half of organizations have no good control over or have an accurate assessment of devices available on their network, there is an urgent need to proactively identify and manage ‘dark devices’ in a more effective way,” said Akella.

He added that WootCloud is committed to developing solutions and insights that will continue to address this demand.