Did You Know That Home Security Cameras Can Be Hacked?


September 14, 2020

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2020 Update

Although this article was written nearly two years ago, the information it contains is still very useful. 

The Ring Doorbell Camera was recently exposed to hacking in a case of a disgruntled ex-boyfriend watching through his access to the camera. If you have a security camera, it is important to know if it is being hacked.

Can your home security camera be hacked? The answer is  yes.  Your security camera can be hacked, but don’t worry, there are several ways you can protect yourself. And no, this is not a guide on how to hack into security cameras.

How to Tell If Your Security System Has Been Hacked

There are several indicators that your security camera, baby monitor, or nanny cam have been hacked.

  • You might hear unusual noises or voices coming from your IP camera or baby monitor. That’s one surefire way to tell if someone has hacked into your system.

  • Your camera rotates while appearing to be following your movements around the room.

  • There’s a change in your camera’s security settings.

  • An LED light randomly blinks or an LED light that’s showing illuminated, but you aren’t the one who activated that feature.

  • There’s a spike in the data flow on your network and your camera.

How to Hack Home Security Cameras

Are you familiar with the phrase “the best defense is a good offense?” You can apply this to many fields, but in this case, we’ll relate it to home security. Understanding how to hack home security cameras will keep you aware of what not to do or what to keep an eye out for.

Hacking can happen locally or remotely.  Local hacking means a hacker is within range of your camera’s wireless network. This is the type of hacking you might see in movies, where a hacker continuously attempts to guess the passphrase until they get in. Other actions include jamming the security camera’s wireless network.

Remote hacking  can stem from your security company falling victim to a data breach that publicizes your login information.

Eight Ways to Help Prevent Your Security Camera from Being Hacked

The best way to prevent your security camera from being hacked is to take the following proactive measures:

  • Always use secure passwords and ones that would be hard for a hacker to figure out. You should also change your password frequently. Never  use the system’s default username or password.

  • Select a brand name system from a company with a good reputation. Brinks Home™ offers cameras with built-in encryption, making them harder to hack.

  • Never buy a used security system.

  • Limit the number of devices used to access your system. Only give your laptop, mobile device and desktop the capability of logging into your system.

  • Never use public connections to access your home’s security system because they are not secure.

  • Periodically check your logins and look for anything you don’t recognize.

  • Always upgrade your firmware so you can check for fixes, improvements, and to help keep your features up-to-date.

  • Buy an anti-jammer. Anti-jammers will detect when the signal to your system has been intercepted by a jamming device. It will alert you that your system has encountered a signal failure. This will allow you to respond immediately to correct the situation.

Securing Your Network

It’s best to choose a wired system, when possible, because a wireless system is more vulnerable to online attacks from a hacker. However, if you are using a wireless system, make sure you activate the WPA2 encryption option that most security cameras come with. The WPA2 is a higher standard of security protocol and should always be used when installing a wireless security system.

What to Do If Your Security Camera Has Been Hacked

If your security cameras were hacked, you will need to update your firmware and contact your  security company  immediately. Doing these two things will help you correct the problem and secure the vulnerability.

If you would like a free quote for a new security system, please contact  Brinks Home today.

Krista Bruton is a DFW-based writer who covers smart home security and consumer protection.

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