A search engine, Shodan, has set up a new section that lets people watch live video through webcams – webcams that their owners probably thought were private.

It’s pretty normal to buy webcams for whole bunch of different reasons, including home security and monitoring your sleeping baby.

The webcams were all connected to the internet, and proper security precautions weren’t taken. Perhaps they’d chosen not to change the default password, or bought a webcam with no password on it.

So Shodan crawls the internet searching for live streams it can access without a password, to highlight the flaws in internet security.

“It’s all over the place,” security researcher Dan Tentler told Ars Technica UK. “Practically everything you can think of.”

Tentler estimates there are millions of webcams that could be accessed by Shodan.


Webcam security isn’t a new issue, back in 2014 Australian baby monitor webcams were being hacked and showing up on Russian websites.

This hasn’t deterred many webcam users for upping their cyber security, as Tentler said many users just don’t want to pay the extra money for security.

“The consumers are saying, ‘We’re not supposed to know anything about this stuff,’” Tentler said. “The vendors don’t want to lift a finger to help users because it costs them money.”

The answer? Manufacturers have to lift their game when it comes to cyber security for customers. But also, change your default passwords on your webcams, just to be sure.

H/T The Motherish

Top photo: AAP ONE/Stock Image

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