Samsung tells homes to virus-check TVs – then deleted it

Samsung has told owners of its smart TVs they should regularly check for viruses and malware.

In a now-deleted tweet on the Samsung Support USA account, the company published a video explaining how to check for malicious attacks on the very latest Wi-Fi enabled QLED TVs.

The company told BBC the 19-second video had been posted for “customers’ education” but didn’t say why it was taken down after the fact.

It’s possible that Samsung realised the tweet may have raised more alarm bells among those who have purchased the top-of-the-range QLED TVs. Essentially, the company admitted that its smart TVs were vulnerable and placed the onus on those who purchased them to be responsible for looking after them.

Samsung does install McAfee anti-virus protection on some of its Tizen-based televisions, but users must still be proactive about protecting their televisions by running checks as they would with any of their other connected devices.

Here’s how the video looked before Samsung deleted the tweet:

Embedded video

In order to carry out the checks on the Tizen OS TVs, users must head to General Settings and select System Manager. From there it’s a case of hitting Smart Security and then Scan. Currently, it has to be done manually because there isn’t a means of scheduling regular checks.

One security expert said Samsung should develop a version of the Tizen operating system that takes responsibility for the virus checking away from the user and automatically updates.

“There is a tiny number of known malware that might attack a TV,” Ken Munro, of Pen Test Partners told the BBC. “I’ve seen one case of a ransomware infection but the prospect of it happening to most users is very small. A better solution would be for Samsung to automatically update its operating system for you.”


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