Baby Monitor Hacked in Toddler’s RoomBy: Tanya Rice - August 13, 2013
Baby monitors are used by parents to do exactly as their name suggests, monitor the baby. We don’t imagine that we are possibly inviting strangers into the safety and security of our homes. Imagine putting your toddler to bed, and using a baby monitor to ensure her safety, only to hear profanities being screamed at her through her monitor while she was sleeping. This is exactly the situation that Marc and Lauren Gilbert experienced when they heard a strange voice coming from 2 year old Allyson’s room.
Marc and Lauren Gilbert were at home going about their normal routine when Marc heard a strange voice. They went to investigate only to find out that the baby monitor had been hacked. The strange voice was screaming ‘Wake up Allyson, you little (expletive).’ After further investigation, Marc noticed the camera following both Lauren and himself as they moved about the room. The hacker then started hurling the profanities at Marc and Lauren, also calling them by name. Marc quickly unplugged the monitor, but the Gilbert’s have no idea how long the hacker has been watching them and their two toddler children. The Gilbert’s learned a startling lesson and want to share their story with other parents with small children.
Baby monitor hacking is just another terrifying reality in the wireless world. Hackers can obtain a large amount of information through a baby monitor. In this case, the hacker learned Allyson’s name by seeing it on her wall.
The packaging on baby monitors can be misleading, and if a baby monitor is going to be used, it should be a digital versus the older analog versions. Monitors that use a Wi-Fi connection are recommended. Even with this, secure measures on your network are imperative. An ABC expert suggest setting Wi-Fi to WPA2, which is the most secure connection. Another important step is to make your password difficult and long.
The only saving grace of this story is that Allyson was not traumatized by the hacker’s actions. She was born deaf and she has cochlear implants, which she was not wearing at the time. “Thankfully we had them off, and she didn’t hear any of it and she slept right through it,” explain Marc Gilbert.