Burglars don’t have to hack your camera to see if you’re home

Burglars don't have to hack your camera to see if you're home

We’re pretty sure that we’ve all seen the stories of homeowners and families getting their home security cameras hacked. Usually, it was done by an internet prankster or troll who posed no real danger to the people in the home although some of the pranksters took the joke too far by scaring some of the families. The cameras are normally hacked when the residents use weak passwords for their wifi or the cameras themselves. Now some security experts say that crooks don’t even need to hack your camera to tell when you’re not home.

According to security researchers from a British university, home security cameras that are connected to the internet send out different rates of data depending on the amount of movement being recorded. To keep down the price of the cameras, the data is unencrypted. However, a potential burglar could be able to tell when no one is home by the amount of data the camera is sending out. The higher the amount of data that’s sent out, the greater the likelihood is that someone is home.

Thankfully, for right now anyway, this is all theoretical. There are no records of anyone using this exploit to rob a home. A thief would have to have intricate computing knowledge to be able to find the exploit. Not just anyone with a phone or a laptop can come up to your home and easily determine your camera’s data output, yet. The researchers are quick to add that there is potential for someone to make software to make the operation easier.

This does show yet another flaw in smart devices connected to the internet known as the internet of things. IoT devices aren’t always as reliable as their manufacturers claim they are. If any device is connected to the internet, there is always a chance that it could be hijacked, hacked, or attacked.