Two international cyber research groups have issued urgent warnings for anyone using wi-fi connected devices like baby monitors, security cameras and private webcams.
Websites are streaming footage from tens of thousands of these cameras for all to see. Experts warn baby monitors are especially susceptible. The researchers reported they were able to hack in to thermostats, alarm systems, home security cameras and, one of the easiest targets, baby monitors.
We’re talking numbers in the hundreds of thousands, and while the researchers did it to expose the issue, others have far more malicious motives. There are sites dedicated to live streams of cribs. Hackers even play music through the monitors and talk to the children.
The issue is most homes use wi-fi routers that come with default passwords, which are incredibly easy to hack. Homeowners often don’t bother changing them – which essentially leaves every connected device in their home exposed.
Here’s what you need to do to protect your privacy:
• Don’t buy used devices, they could have malware installed.
• Research each device, find out if it has a default password. If it does, change it.
• Keep in mind passwords with at least 16 characters are hardest for hackers to crack.
One of those cyber research groups just named the Mi-Cam baby monitor as particularly susceptible, saying hackers can have full access to them.