The Internet of Things: 7 Scary Security Scenarios

The IoT can be frightening when viewed from the vantage point of information security.
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What's not to like about the Internet of Things? You drive to work in your connected car while the GPS automatically navigates you away from a traffic jam that would have parked you on the expressway for two hours. At the same time, your onboard messaging app reads you an email from your boss telling you that you've earned a 10% raise for your big project.

The nightmare scenario might look like this. You take a taxi home after work because a hacker breaks into your car's WiFi, takes control of the steering wheel, and crashes you into a tree. When you arrive, you are greeted with a strangely worded email asking for a ransom in exchange for the return of an embarrassing photo of you at a recent party you thought was beyond reach and securely hidden in your camera roll in the cloud.

Love it or fear it, the Internet of Things is fast becoming a reality. By the year 2020, the analyst firm Gartner predicts, there will be more than 26 billion Internet-connected "things" -- not including PCs, tablets, or smartphones -- all of which are raising the challenges of cyber security to a whole new level. Recently, security researchers have offered a glimpse of potentially scary security scenarios that could unfold in the not too distant future. Here are seven that may be closer than you think.

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