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The Evolving Technological Landscape

  • Nathan Clarke
Chapter

Abstract

Technology is closely intertwined with modern society, and few activities in our daily life do not rely upon technology in some shape or form – from boiling a kettle and making toast to washing clothes and keeping warm. The complexity of this technology is however increasing, with more intelligence and connectivity being added to a whole host of previously simple devices. For instance, home automation enables every electrical device to be independently accessed remotely, from lights and hot water to audio and visual systems. Cars now contain more computing power than the computer that guided Apollo astronauts to the moon (Physics.org 2010). With this increasing interoperability and flexibility comes a risk. What happens when hackers obtain access to your home automation system? Switch devices on, turn up the heating, or switch the fridge off? If hackers gain access to your car, would they be able to perform a denial of service attack? Could they have more underhand motives – perhaps cause an accident, stop the breaking or speed the car up? Smart electricity meters are being deployed in the US, UK and elsewhere that permit close monitoring of electricity and gas usage as part of the effort towards reducing the carbon footprint (Anderson and Fluoria 2010). The devices also allow an electricity/gas supplier to manage supplies at times of high usage, by switching electricity off to certain homes whilst maintaining supply to critical services such as hospitals. With smart meters being deployed in every home, an attack on these devices could leave millions of homes without electricity. The impact upon society and the resulting confusion and chaos that would derive is unimaginable.

Keywords

Mobile Phone Personal Identification Number Biometric System Financial Fraud Mobile Handset 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Security, Communications & Network Research (CSCAN)Plymouth UniversityPlymouthUK

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