Hacking consumentenrobots ‘dangerous’

Hacking consumentenrobots ‘dangerous’

Photo: Getty

Security experts call consumentenrobots ‘dangerously easy to hack. Hacked robots owners would be able to spy on or even attacks.

That say researchers from security firm IOActive against Bloomberg.

The company found vulnerabilities in industrial robotic arms of the American Universal Robots, the Alpha 1 and Alpha 2 of the Chinese UBTech Robotics and the well-known robots Pepper and NAO, the Japanese SoftBank.

The scientists knew the Alpha 2-robot of UBTech, as to hacking, that armed with a screwdriver a tomato to leave. The robot is primarily sold as toys.


Hacked robot cross a tomato with a screwdriver

The software of thuisrobots Pepper and NAO of SoftBank had vulnerabilities that espionage is made possible. The researchers were able to the cameras and microphones of the robots to turn on and the images unnoticed to a server to upload.


The most troubling finding to the researchers, however, the vulnerabilities in the robot arms of Universal Robots. Those robots are used in factories to, for example, welding, paint spraying or things to put together.

Although the arms are expressly designed for use without the beveiligingskooi next to people working, the safety by the researchers to be remotely disabled.

So would the robotic arms can be set up for people to injure themselves. The robotic arms are, according to IOActive powerful and big enough to even at low speeds a skull fracture to cause.

More stringent requirements

Although the researchers in many instances need to have access to the same network as the robots to hack into, call IOActive at to robots of all calibers easier to control.

“If we know of these vulnerabilities, there is a chance that we are not the only ones,” says beveiligingshoofd of IOActive Lucas Apa. “We are still in the early days of robotics, but as that grows we want to be sure of a secure future.

IOActive has the companies involved in January of this year, will be notified of the vulnerabilities. A half year later the leak still not plugged, causing the security company, the need and saw his research to make it public.

Experts worried

A large group of directors of robotic farms warned this weekend, yet in an open letter on the dangers of ‘killer robots’.

The experts ask the United Nations in that letter to take action to oorlogsrobots a halt. “Lethal autonomous weapons threaten the third revolution in warfare”, is stated in the letter.

See also:
Robotexperts call for action against ‘killer robots’

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