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IoT Botnets by the Numbers

IoT devices are a botherder's dream attack-vector.

Image Source: Adobe Stock

Image Source: Adobe Stock

Even before Mirai burst onto the scene a year-and-a-half ago, security experts had been warning anyone who listened about how juicy Internet of things (IoT) devices were looking to criminal botnet herders. Proliferating faster than black t-shirts at a security conference, IoT sensors have spread throughout our personal and business lives inside cameras, automobiles, TVs, refrigerators, wearable technology, and more.

They offer the perfect combination of variables for attackers seeking an ideal botnet node: ubiquity, connectivity, poor default settings, rampant software vulnerability - and utter forgetability. Once these devices are deployed, they're rarely patched or even monitored. So it was only a matter of time before cybercriminals started harvesting them for botnet operations.

Mirai offered one of the first large-scale implementations of IoT botnets, and since its inception in late 2016 the attacks have been relentless.

Here is a rundown of some of the most relevant stats around IoT botnet attacks.


Ericka Chickowski specializes in coverage of information technology and business innovation. She has focused on information security for the better part of a decade and regularly writes about the security industry as a contributor to Dark Reading.  View Full Bio

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