As a parent, perhaps your primary concerns in life is to keep your children safe. But in a world where everything’s connected, nothing is off limits for hackers, including your child’s baby monitor. According to an ABC News report, a couple in Houston, Texas, recently learned this the hard way when they heard a “detached voice” coming from the room of their two-year-old daughter saying some extremely lewd things.
As a voice shouted obscenities at their sleeping daughter, the parents entered the room and noticed the hacker moved the camera in their direction. Soon, the couple realized the voice was coming form the camera and quickly unplugged the monitor. Though it has yet to be confirmed, ZDNet seems to believe the model is the Foscam F19821P. The monitor, which has visual and audio input, was connected to the family’s Wi-Fi network. Though ABC’s story doesn’t go into detail about how exactly the hacker got access to the monitor, one theory is that the parents never changed the default security settings. The Foscam comes with a default user name and password, which are both “admin.” Not exactly a tough code to hack for someone who knows how to access someone’s personal Wi-Fi network.
The Houston couple have been using the Internet-connected monitor for the past two years, and the father, Marc Gilbert, says he “almost couldn’t live without it.” Although what happened to this family is undeniably creepy and frightening, Gilbert’s daughter did not hear the hacker’s shouts. His daughter, Allyson, was born deaf and has cochlear implants. “Thankfully we had them off and she didn’t hear any of it and she slept right through it,” Gilbert told ABC.
Gilbert says he won’t be using the monitors anymore – and we don’t blame him. However, with careful protection of your Wi-Fi network, and extremely secure passwords, having your baby monitor hacked shouldn’t be a common issue. Still, we suggest following these guidelines for building a strong password, and using password manager apps to help keep track of them.
Check out the video below for ABC’s full story.