Hacked Security Cameras Used to Livestream Swatting Incidents

One trend that has become ubiquitous in just the last five years is the proliferation of security cameras for the home. This compact product provides homeowners with a new level of security that was previously difficult to achieve without an expensive external camera setup. But, like any modern Internet-connected product, they can be hacked, and the few incidents involving them are nothing if not the emblematic tales of our times.

white surveillance camera hanging on the wall
A white surveillance camera hangs on the wall. Photo by Alan J. Hendry

Such as today’s story where hackers used Ring security cameras hacked by homeowners to watch as the house was raided by police. For those of you who may not know what spanking is, it is the act of calling authorities to a residence to deal with usually very serious though wrongful incidents such as those involving domestic violence or even a hostage situation. The authorities often respond with force and with weapons drawn. Watching the drama unfold via live camera feed is believed to be the main incentive behind such “hitting” incidents although it has also been used for revenge and as a simple “prank”. Needless to say, such fake reports are taken seriously, and posting something fake like this is also taken pretty seriously when it comes to holding people accountable.

PetaPixel reports that the two hackers, Kya Christian Nelson, of Racine, Wisconsin, and James Thomas Andrew McCarty of Charlotte, North Carolina, were recently convicted of accessing Ring owners’ Yahoo email accounts to gather information about them before making fake emergency calls to the authority. . They would then live-stream the event as it opened and, in one instance, even use Ring’s camera microphone to taunt responding authorities. What makes this matter even more irritating to the authorities is that perpetrators can do this sort of thing to people all over the United States which makes it much more than just a prank phone call.

How can owners prevent something like this from happening to any of their devices? It’s actually quite simple according to the authorities cited in the PetaPixel article: You can enable two-factor authentication and implement good “cyber” security protocols such as strong passwords and regular account maintenance.

Do you use products like Amazon Ring? Have you ever worried about hacking? Let us know what you think in the comments.

Check out some of our other photography news on Light Stalking at this link here.


Similar Posts