Are surveillance cameras an invasion of your privacy?

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 21 June 2017 12:55
Are surveillance cameras an invasion of your privacy? Are surveillance cameras an invasion of your privacy?

With every home surveillance camera, you are purchasing a peace of mind, yet are also inviting hackers into your life. Yes, home surveillance cameras can be contradictory to your security and safety, if not used properly. The key message here is that every home surveillance camera owner needs to take the proper measures to ensure that their home security cameras are not hacked. There are proven ways to do this, let’s take a look.

If a hacker intends to gain control of your surveillance camera or in other words hack it, there are two means to this feat: that is locally or remotely.

Protecting yourself from being hacked locally:

In order for a hacker to access your surveillance camera locally, they need to be in range of your wireless network to which your surveillance camera is connected. In this case, the hackers hack into your wireless network. In order to protect yourself from being hacked locally, you need to constantly change your wireless network passwords, purchase surveillance cameras that are encrypted and password protected.

In this case, hacking protection begins before you purchase a surveillance camera. Do the proper research. When choosing a surveillance camera, make sure that the brand is reliable and can keep your data safe. Does your brand use high-level encryptions to protect your privacy?

Protecting yourself from being hacked remotely:

Hackers that employ the remote method often exploit data breaches or gain access to your videos while they are being transmitted over the Internet. Here the weak spots are, once again, passwords, including poor or default passwords, or direct attacks at the web server. Remember, your surveillance camera comes with a default password that must be changed. There are various websites that openly list possible default passwords for everyone to see. Furthermore, it is recommended, if possible, to restrain from connecting your surveillance camera to the Internet entirely. You will be more secure, if you record the feed and view it later, if needed, than live streaming it onto your handheld devices.

If you are hacked, what are the signs?

Unfortunately, it is often impossible to know if your surveillance camera has been hacked. However, there are a few signals to look for, including a slow performance (if not due to slow wireless network signal, connection, and low batteries). If the camera is functioning worse than typical, this may mean that hackers have access to your camera, making the camera’s CPU cycle work twice as hard. This is particularly noticeable on cameras with little memory storage. Checking your surveillance camera logs is one way to confirm if you have been hacked. Your surveillance camera should show the IP addresses that have accessed the camera. If a log is suspicious, notify the proper authorities, immediately change your passwords and access codes, and continue practices the following measures:

1.Change your passwords (camera, computer, router) frequently, once a month or every time you have to share your Wi-Fi password. CHANGE THE DEFAULT PASSWORD, no excuses.

a. Do not include, birthdays, names, and favourite items in the password

b. Use a 12 digit password

c. Use number, capital letters, punctuation marks

d. Use unique passwords for every device and account

e.  Do not leave the password hanging around the house

f.   Do not send passwords in a clear text or message  

g. Make your router invisible if possible

2. Do not use public Wi-Fi for viewing your surveillance camera feedback; this leaves you vulnerable to hackers. Use mobile data services, and known secured connections.

3. Put up a firewall

4. Do not forget to upgrade and update your firmware, to resolve glitches, bugs and add extra security.

5. Monitor your surveillance camera logs.

6. Manage your camera settings, if remote viewing your feedback is not a must, change the camera's default online monitoring setting.

7. Connect to a separate network. Everything is connected these days, and most of us love our smart homes, and so do hackers. Use separate networks to ensure that hackers do not easily gain access to all your devices and data.

8. Purchase an activity monitoring software

9. Turn off the camera or cover the lens when not in use, use the privacy shield if your surveillance camera has one.

110. Do not place the camera in a position that might give away your home address or location

111. Place the camera in sensible areas of the house, do not place it in the bathroom or the bedroom.


Protect the device that is meant to protect your home and loved ones.

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