Peekaboo I See You – how to privatize your Internet cameras
Here is a map of Trendnet Webcams that were/are publicly viewable by anyone in the world with an Internet connection. Hopefully yours isn’t among them!
While this story became very public and it’s about the Trendnet Internet cameras specifically, they are not the only brand of products affected. Any and all devices that can be reached directly from the Internet are subject to updates to the firmware. Firwmare is the software that runs within those devices. When a vulnerability is discovered, companies tend to patch them and make the updated software available for you to download and “patch” the firmware.
So what can you do?
- Check the make and model of your Internet Cameras
- Log into the camera like you normally do and check the current Firmware
- Locate the manufacturer’s website and look for the latest firmware version
- If the manufacturer has a firmware newer than the one you use, follow their instructions to download and install the firmware
- Subscribe to firmware updates so that can respond more proactively to future firmware updates
Some folks also like to raise the bar a little more than that. They change the default port (so instead of some.website.com you would visit some.website.com:55555 as an example. For highly-sensitive environments, talk to your IT vendor about requiring a VPN before the webcam is accessible.
Here’s to keeping your cameras private and secure!