You Need to Patch Your LG Smart TV Right Now

You Need to Patch Your LG Smart TV Right Now

Photo: monticello (Shutterstock)

Recently discovered software vulnerabilities in tens of thousands of LG smart TVs could allow cybercriminals to hijack them. To make sure your TV isn’t one of the unlucky few that gets unscrupulously commandeered by a dark web cretin, make sure to update your device right now.

On Tuesday, security firm Bitdefender published security research revealing four different software bugs impacting LG’s WebOS TV operating system. The bugs, which affect about 91,000 devices worldwide, could allow a bad actor to gain a number of invasive privileges, including the ability to get root access to an impacted device. Researchers write that the bugs—which impact WebOS versions 4 through 7—could hypothetically allow a hacker to add a new user to the device, inject their own code into it, and thus “fully take over” the TV. Bitdefender originally alerted LG to these issues in November. Gizmodo reached out to LG for comment and will update this story if it responds.

Ars Technica helpfully notes that, in cases like this, it’s not just a matter of your TV potentially getting hijacked. If a bad actor gets into the accounts linked to your device, they may have access to a wealth of other personal data, including email account access and financial information. You could also wind up getting your device tied into a crypto-mining scheme or a botnet.

From the map of the bugs provided by Bitdefender, it looks like around 7,000 devices in the United States are vulnerable. A majority of the impacted devices are located in South Korea and Hong Kong, as well as in Sweden.

To make absolutely sure that your device is safe, you should ensure that you’ve updated your TV to its latest software version. LG released a patch for the security issues as part of its latest update on March 22. Most LG devices should have downloaded this update automatically. That said, if you want to make absolutely sure you’ve got the latest version of WebOS TV, follow LG’s instructions and head to Settings > Support > Software Update, and click “Check for Updates.” If there is one, hit “Download and Install.” That’s it—that’s all you have to do. Now back to streaming.

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