Most people will still use the TV and keep it connected to their network without realising the security risks.
And the above is for mainstream TV brands, imagine how bad it is for weird off-brands and store own-brands where the original software is of unknown provenance and the chances of any updates is nill.
It then struck me: "Has someone hacked a different OS onto one of these bad boys?" I couldn't find anything but some forum posts saying it's impossible as unfortunately the TV SoC's are all highly proprietary. Now just imagine if we could get access to those SoC's. Run linux, custom menus, remote mapping, control via ethernet/wifi, better settings management, run kodi on the tv, etc. It's massively frustrating.
Of course it depends from models and what not, so YMMV, but essentially they run a Linux of sorts without providing the source code of "key" parts and "locking it down" as much as they can, if someone manages to workaround these "locks" ...
Here is a thread about installing "full" Ubuntu/Debian on a Samsung, but it is from a few years ago, so likely this is only possible to "old" TV's:
Those laws need to be clarified to also cover security updates. If a TV that breaks due to bad capacitors after 3 years is covered for a refund, so should a TV that has known security holes that don't get patched. "Users don't care" you say - well the tabloids would have a field day with "GET A FREE NEW TV WITH THIS ONE SECRET TRICK" headlines getting people to return them.
I would imagine they can exfiltrate their tracking info with very little network traffic over LTE.
This is my concern with almost any "smart home", IoT type devices now.
As we've already seen with cars, it's entirely possible for a whole industry to shift towards anti-consumer measures like mandatory remote access, and for neither market competition nor laws and regulations to rein them in.
In other news, car theft was essentially a solved problem, where it had become so difficult to drive away that the most effective strategy was literally to break into someone's home/office and steal the real keys. Today, car theft is on the rise, and numerous researchers have demonstrated compromising the security of numerous models from entry-level to expensive prestige vehicles in a matter of seconds.
Not all remote control is good. Not all data sharing is good. Being permanently online is not always good. At some point, we as a society need to realise that and start regulating the products and services we use accordingly... Ideally before some mass hack breaches the privacy of millions of families with smart devices putting cameras and microphones in their homes, or causes every car of a certain model to suddenly accelerate to full speed in the middle of town or slam on the brakes on a high speed road, or otherwise causes some other kind of widespread damage that can't just be ignored or recovered afterwards.
Sometimes they’d give you a bit of credit, but others wouldn’t activate the program unless you phoned home.
I thought it was just faster, and generally only usable at closer rangers because of higher frequencies. And those higher frequencies make it less capable of penetrating into buildings.
Maybe i'm wrong, I'm no 5G expert
Conversely, most people won't even know the TV isn't being supported.
I guess that doesn't make people keep buying TVs...
You can, they sell "just dumb panels" for commercial signage applications. They cost way more. Smart TVs selling your eyeballs and your data make them cheaper than dumb panels. And since most consumers buy on price, they also get the advantage of scale. So they're more expensive and they do less, their only market is a handful of privacy geeks who aren't going to just not connect it to the internet - a tiny market.
> A January interview on The Verge's podcast with Vizio's chief technology officer, Bill Baxter, did a great job illuminating how this works.
> "This is a cutthroat industry," Baxter said. "It's a 6% margin industry. The greater strategy is I really don't need to make money off of the TV. I need to cover my cost."
> "It's not just about data collection. It's about post-purchase monetization of the TV."
> "You sell some movies, you sell some TV shows, you sell some ads, you know," he said. "It's not really that different than the Verge website."
- audio recordings (smart TVs have microphones)
- photos of your living room (smart TVs have cameras)
- still images of TV content
- SSIDs of neighbouring WiFi routers for geolocation
- data from scanning nearby smart devices Bluetooth
- daily/weekly usage data
- data from scanning USB devices plugged into the TV (e.g. list of filenames from your pendrive / USB HDD)
Yes, let's take long-lived hardware and embed short-lived networked software in it, and do so in an environment where there are no economic or regulatory incentives to keep them patched over the expected life of the hardware. Thanks for the innovation, tech industry.
The marketing shit getting people to buy 4K TVs when a 20 year old person struggles to see the difference from the other end of the room is literally producing unnecessary technology when the old stuff was just fine.
Add on artificial software breakage and it becomes even more extreme.
The vast majority of people buy the shit because it's pushed on them. My grandmother doesn't bloody need 4K.
I do dislike smart TVs however. Very thankful my dumb Samsung has lasted about 10 years and still going strong. Are there any dumb TVs left to buy?
Has never been updated but it's airgapped so who cares.
Of course if it gets on some open WiFi or has a sim card in it I'm knackered. Doh. Should probably crack it open and remove the antenna.
Edit: just realized you meant the wifi antenna.
So yes, I would remove the antenna.
Someone somewhere probably thought, "Hey, let's help out our customers that may be too lazy or not smart enough to figure out how to connect, and do it automatically for them!"
People who remove antennae from their devices are doing so because the law is cold comfort after the fact. This is like telling a farmer they don't need guns because 911 will be there quickly enough. Nope.
It also seems unlikely that connecting to an unsecured access point can be said to be "unauthorized access". That would make like, free wifi essentially anywhere (hotels, fast food places, airports, coffee shops, libraries) illegal to access unless you like, asked someone first. It's in direct contrast with how probably 99% of people use WiFi.
Maybe you're talking about captive portals. Not all free wifi even has terms.
Laws don't stop crimes, they just allow crimes to be prosecuted.
(Otherwise there would be no more murders, drunk drivers, etc.)
Manufacturers want larger margins for their shareholders.
Manufacturers see the data whoring, privacy violating business.
Manufacturers put in "smart" oses into TVs so they can begin recording what you are watching, saying (they have mics and you agree to the TOS they cna record your living room!) or even doing so they can whore out for more profit than they made on you buying the tv.
There's nothing stopping you from treating a smart TV like a dumb TV. Just don't configure the network.
I've read, but never confirmed that some smart TVs will queue data and then attempt to connect to unsecured networks to upload to the mothership.
...your TV? Are you going to hang out inside the cage with it? Or maybe watch it through the screen door? There's a use case for 4K, it has enough pixels so that even looking through the Faraday cage you still get 1080p.
You can still buy "non-smart" TVs and do this.
But I think most people want this functionality built in to the TV, for 2 reasons:
1. Aesthetics. For example, my TV is wall mounted, and I don't want a box strapped on the side of it with wires hanging out.
2. Ease of use. Most people want to plug it in and have it just work
Not sure if that would meet your requirements? But it sounds like it would. Just might be a bit more pricey depending on features.
I wish you could just buy modern TVs that are essentially just monitors.
I imagine you'll say something about watching TV with other people, which seems fair, but in my experience people don't watch TV "together". The TV is on, maybe one person is paying attention to it, most are just on their phone, or talking to eachother.
Maybe my experience is an outlier here.
I don't think there's much more a reason that, nor do folk need more reason than that.
In the past, I mainly just used a tablet to watch video.
Also, you might want to opt out of using an Amazon or Google HDMI dongle for privacy reasons. Another thing to consider is that dumb TVs traditionally have IR which has its pros and cons.
Seems obvious to me why they sell.
I did precisely what you suggest: buy a TV and hook a streaming box to it.
A tempest attack on a display, on the other hand, would be more interesting and the drone might actually be useful for that. Add a gimbal for a directional antenna and you'd be golden. https://github.com/martinmarinov/TempestSDR
He overpowered the OTA broadcast, the drone is unneccessary and it can be done with an amp and a directional antenna. How do I know it? It says so right in the article.
It is fast, 3D capable. I actually have hooked it up to my computer to do real high end CAD (NX) in 3D. Frankly, it is amazing. I probably am the only one in North America who does it. Spiffy, and I really am sad plasma displays are no longer produced. Might just score another one while I can.
Nothing beats glowing phosphorus in glass man!
I did update it for newer codecs to play movies on USB, but that is it.
Totally unsupported now.
I like to buy the Smart models on clearance. I got this one, and it is huge, for like 800 bucks. Ignoring the smart part can be a cost savings if one looks.