The ‘scariest search engine on the Internet’ finds Web-connected devices that Google doesn’t


“When people don’t see stuff on Google, they think no one can find it. That’s not true.” – John Matherly, creator of Shodan, the scariest search engine on the Internet.

Unlike Google, which crawls the Web looking for websites, Shodan navigates the Internet’s back doors. It’s a kind of “dark” search engine, called by ZDNet the “Google for hackers”, looking for the servers, random webcams, printers, routers and all the other stuff that is connected to and makes up the Internet.

It’s crazy what can be found with a simple search on Shodan. Countless traffic lights, security cameras, home automation devices and heating systems are connected to the Internet and easy to spot.

Shodan users have found control systems for a water park, a gas station, a hotel wine cooler and a crematorium. Cybersecurity researchers have even located command and control systems for nuclear power plants by using Shodan.

For instance, a quick search for “default password” shows countless printers, servers and system control devices that use “admin” as their user name and “1234” as their password. Many more connected systems require no credentials at all — all you need is a Web browser to connect to them.

Scary stuff, if it got into the wrong hands.

Official website.

– via

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