IoT Garage Door Manufacturer Bricks Customer’s Device Following Bad Review

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If this is not a testament to the frightful reality of the possibilities promised by the internet of everything, then nothing is. A manufacturer of IoT garage doors (don’t ask why it is necessary for a garage door to be connected to the internet) remotely killed the device after a dissatisfied customer left an undesirable review of the product on a forum.

The startup, SoftComplex, launched the device, Garadget, which lets users control their garage doors using an application.

Business Insider reports that a less-than-impressed customer left a comment on the Gradget community board complaining about the device (FYI: the company has removed that complaint, so the link only brings up an error message).

But our helpful brethren over at Ars Technica managed to copy the message and we have dutifully brought it to you here.

“Just installed and attempting to register a door when the app started doing this. Have uninstalled and reinstalled iphone app, powered phone off/on – wondering what kind of piece of shit I just purchased here…
Ars Technica reports that the peeved user left a 1-star rating for the device on Amazon (from whence he purchased the device), and left this helpful tip for other potential buyers:

“Junk – DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY – iPhone app is a piece of junk, crashes constantly, start-up company that obviously has not performed proper quality assurance tests on their products.”

According to Ars Technica, Denis Grisak, the person behind the device, retaliated by bricking the product and also leaving this priceless nugget:

“Martin,

The abusive language here and in your negative Amazon review, submitted minutes after experiencing a technical difficulty, only demonstrates your poor impulse control. I’m happy to provide the technical support to the customers on my Saturday night but I’m not going to tolerate any tantrums.

At this time your only option is return Garadget to Amazon for refund. Your unit ID 2f0036… will be denied server connection.”

Really?

The main issue with this scenario is the havoc which can be wrecked by leveraging the connectedness of almost everything, EVERYTHING. Toothbrushes, coffee mugs, slippers – if you can think it, there is probably an IoT version out there. Highly unnecessary and quite dangerous from a security standpoint – but common sense has been sacrificed on the altar of convenience.

In several interviews with security experts on this platform, the message has been consistent with regards to IoT security – it is nonexistent. Cisco, Cyber adapt, NIST, FireEye, Akamai, LemonFish etc.

Quite simply put, if you don’t want anyone breaching it remotely, keep it off the internet.