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Flaw in home security cameras exposes live feeds to hackers

Ben Grubb (SMH) | Feb. 8, 2012
A security flaw in web-connected home security cameras made by Trendnet, which distributes in Australia, is allowing internet users to spy on the private video feeds of thousands.

Trendnet addressed the problem in a statement.

"Trendnet has recently gained awareness of an IP camera vulnerability common to many Trendnet SecurView cameras," the Torrance, California-based firm said.

"It is Trendnet's understanding that video from select Trendnet IP cameras may be accessed online in real time," Trendnet said.

"Upon awareness of the issue, Trendnet initiated immediate actions to correct and publish updated firmware which resolves the vulnerability," it said.

In the statement, Trendnet listed 22 camera models sold since April 2010 which may have the vulnerability and provided a link to a site where camera owners can download a firmware fix.

"Trendnet is aware that this IP Camera security threat may affect your confidence in Trendnet solutions," the company said. "Trendnet extends its deepest apologies to consumers which may be impacted by this issue."

Australian security analyst at IBRS, James Turner, said that the camera vulnerability highlighted the fact that when you plugged any device into the internet, other people could find it. "Australians should be thinking about this issue very carefully as we look forward to all of the capabilities that the [national broadband network] is promising," he said.

As broadband became more capable and ubiquitous, he said people would "inevitably increase their use of internet-intensive applications and services, such as video conferencing."

The resulting plethora of devices, which will be left plugged in and turned on, many with webcams and microphones, would be "an appealing target to opportunistic hackers", he said.

- With AFP


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