Virtual Peeping Toms Exploit Unsecured IP Cameras

By Matthew Harwood


More online Googling discovered unsecured IP cameras installed in retail shops, which, naturally, doesn't seem wise. As Connor notes, if a thief could tie the camera's IP address to the store's specific location, the streaming video could be used by a criminal to case a target and determine the ideal time to rob it. In the most disconcerting instance, Connor accessed a public IP camera watching over an intersection in College Station,Texas (location below).

And Connor's right, it's incredibly simple to access unsecured IP cameras. After reading his piece, I was able to view an unprotected IP camera in less than two minutes. I'll I did was follow the search terms he provided, found a camera's IP address, and copied and pasted it into my Web browser. Instantly I was watching a lakefront view of an American flag blowing in the wind, which also displays the address of a Web site full of family vacation photos.

So a useful reminder for IP camera customers: Unless you want the unwashed masses of the Internet using your IP camera to gawk at whatever it is you're streaming, secure your IP cameras.

♦ Photo from SingaporeSkyCam2 by ngotoh/Flickr


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