Can Home Security Cameras Be Hacked?

Can Home Security Cameras Be Hacked?

A lot of trust goes into a home camera security camera system as it records our daily lives. There's an assumption that no one has access to the footage except for the homeowner and, for reputable security companies, that's true.

However, it is possible for hackers to get their hands on home security footage and even post the private footage online. And while you may think it takes the work of genius engineering, it's usually the result of human error and failure to follow best security practices.

Security cameras can be hacked but there are simple, easy steps you can take to prevent this from happening to you!

Here are 3 ways to kick hackers to the curb and keep your cameras secure:

  1. Create strong passwords that are easy to remember and hard to guess (either by hand or via brute force with a computer).
  2. Use two-factor authentication where available for an extra layer of security.
  3. Know how to spot social engineering and prevent it from happening to you.

Don't leave your home camera security to chance. Cameras from reputable companies are much more secure than many discount brands you find online. Ackerman guarantees your safety and security so you can have peace of mind knowing your home is secure and private. Call Ackerman at 800.552.1111 or schedule an instant security quote online.

1. Create Strong Passwords

Just like your online banking, social media accounts, and email… always have a strong password.

Most home security cameras can be accessed remotely via an IP address (a number that represents your home network). While this is great for checking in on your home during a vacation or accessing recorded footage while you're away, anyone can access it to a degree.

Home routers or networks with a default password like "password" or "12345" makes your system extremely vulnerable to nefarious parties that want access to your footage.

  • Avoid common phrases like "password."
  • Use a combination of capitalized and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols.
  • Longer is better. Shoot for more than 12 characters and up to 20.
  • Make it unique. A password manager can help you organize unique passwords for every service.

2. Use Two-Factor Authentication

Most modern services now offer a security feature you should use: two-factor authentication. It combines something you know (a password) with something you have (a smartphone) to create an additional layer of security that's nearly impossible to crack if you do it right.

It works like this:

After you enter your password successfully, you'll be asked for a code that you can only produce with a physical device such as your smartphone. There are two ways to produce that code:

  1. SMS/Text Message (Good). The service sends a code to your phone and you have a brief amount of time to enter that code before it expires. This is much better than a password alone, however it's not fool-proof.
  2. Authenticator App (Better). The more secure way to handle two-factor authentication is with a dedicated app, such as Google Authenticator or Authy. These apps generate tokens every 20-30 seconds that expire and reset. There's virtually no way for a criminal to access these codes without physically having your smartphone.

A 2019 report from Microsoft found that two-factor authentication blocks 99.9% of all account hacks. Make sure every account connected to your home security system (and every account in general) takes advantage of this security feature.

3. Beware of Social Engineering

You may be surprised to hear that the most common form of hacking doesn't involve a computer at all. "Social engineering" is when a hacker deceives someone into volunteering private information that will give away access to their security system.

You might be thinking, "I would never just hand over my information to a stranger," but social engineering is much more sophisticated and common than you might think.

Hackers do their research on a company or individual and use clever methods such as emailing or calling and pretending to be a person of authority, such as a company rep or even a relative. They'll also often use scare tactics to try and get the information they want.

The best defense against social engineering is to always confirm the identity of the person asking for information. The easiest way to do so is by contacting the company or person in charge yourself. If you get a call or email from someone claiming to be an authority, hang up/delete the email and call that person back using a number or email address you know to be accurate.

Don't Chance It! Use a Company With Security You Can Trust

These tips can help you prevent hacking in any scenario, but having the right security company behind you can make all the difference. Call Ackerman at 800.552.1111 or schedule an instant security quote online.