Online murders could become a thing of the present by the end of the year.

According to The StackEuropol, a law enforcement agency that specializes in intelligence work, issued a warning on Oct. 7 that the world’s first ‘online murder’ could happen by the end of the year, according to a study released by IID, and US-based security firm.

The study looked at the possible physical dangers that could be linked to cybercrime, and found that a spike in ‘injury and possible deaths’ by computer hackers through critical connected equipment could be expected.

The types of critical equipment that could be compromised and used to inflict death includes pacemakers, implantable insulin pimps and defibrillators. So far, there have been no known reports of hacking-related deaths.

Politicians in the U.S. are taking the possibility of hacking related deaths seriously. In 2013, former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney had a wireless function on his defibrillator removed to avoid hackers from getting into his device.

The idea of online murders were explored in an episode of the political thriller Homeland, in which a CIA counterpart was killed by terrorist who were able to get into his pacemaker. Cheney told BBC News:

“[The scene] was an accurate portrayal of what was possible.”

According to the report, hackers could do more than physically harm a subject. Blackmail and extortion could be on the rise as well, as criminals could target people by locking out them out of their cars and homes in exchange for a ransom.

This is already a reality with computers, as Hackers are using a virus called Ransomware to lock users out of their computers in exchange for ransom. Europol stated in the report:

“The Internet of Everything represents a whole new attack vector that we believe criminals will already be looking for ways to exploit.”

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