Hackers force Thousands of Google Chromecast Devices, Smart TVs to play PewDiePie Videos

Thousands of Google’s Chromecast streaming adapters, Google Home smart speakers and smart TVs with built-in Chromecast technology were targeted by hackers Wednesday, who forced the devices to play a video of controversial YouTube star PewDiePie.

The hack attack, which began Wednesday morning, took advantage of badly configured routers to find streaming devices exposed to the public internet. Once found this way, the hackers renamed the device’s Wi-Fi name, and then attempted to play a PewDiePie YouTube video. A website detailing the hack claimed that the hackers were able to play the video on more than 2,700 devices.

The website also shared some of the information the hackers had access, including “what WIFI your Chromecast/Google Home is connected to, what bluetooth devices it has paired to, how long it’s been on, what WiFi networks your device remembers, what alarms you have set, and much more.” Read more

By forcing devices to play a PewDiePie video, the hackers threw their weight behind the “Subscribe to PewDiePie” campaign, which fans of the Swedish video-game streamer and vlogger have been engaged in since late last year. The goal of that campaign has been to keep PewDiePie’s subscriber count above that of T-Series, an Indian music video channel.

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