Today, many people are asking themselves whether Wi-Fi enabled security cameras are safe to use.
Obviously, they are designed to keep you and your family safe by minimizing the risk of intruders. But, at the same time, there are also a few security concerns that come with them as well.
Why You Need to Protect Your Wi-Fi Enabled Security Camera
Needless to say, having your home security camera hacked can lead to all sorts of serious consequences. And, research has shown that thousands of Wi-Fi enabled security cameras are being hacked each and every year. In fact, the American ABC News network has even reported baby monitors with cameras being hacked.
How ironic is that? Devices that are designed to offer security and protection are being used by hackers and criminals to invade the very privacy that they were created to protect.
So, with that in mind, we’ve put together the following articles to explain a few simple ways that you can secure your home’s Wi-Fi enabled security camera.
Tips for Securing Your Security Camera
By now, it should be easy to see that Wi-Fi enabled cameras aren’t as safe and secure as you may have thought. Fortunately, below, you’ll find 10 essential tips to keep your security cameras safe from hackers.
Use a Network Firewall, VPN Or Antivirus Software
Often, hackers gain access to security cameras by first hacking into the network that they are connected to.
Therefore, the best way to prevent a hacker from being able to gain access to your home’s security camera is to use a firewall or VPN on your router and make sure that you periodically run antivirus software to make sure there are no threats present.
Learn more about the top software for privacy.
Secure Your Home’s Wireless Network
First things first, securing your home’s Wi-Fi network is the simplest and most basic thing you can do to protect your Wi-Fi enabled cameras from being targeted by cybercriminals.
This includes using WPA2-AES encryption, changing your router’s password to something stronger, changing the network’s default SSID name, and disabling guest networking.
Disable Remote Online Monitoring
Today, most Wi-Fi enable cameras to have a remote viewing feature, which allows you to monitor your home from wherever you are. The problem is that this same feature could potentially be used by criminals to gain remote access to your camera.
With that said, it’s best to turn this feature off when you’re not planning on using it.
Use a Strong Password for Your Wi-Fi Enabled Camera
Often, people who install a Wi-Fi enabled camera in their home forget or simply don’t know that they can set an access password. The fact is that not having a password leaves your camera vulnerable to hackers and criminals who may be trying to gain access to it.
Therefore, it’s always recommended to use a long, complex password to keep any of your Wi-Fi enabled devices as safe as possible.
Read more tips on creating strong passwords.
Regularly Update Your Camera’s Firmware
From time to time, manufacturers will release firmware updates to enhance their product’s performance and security, especially after a flaw has been targeted by hackers.
So, it’s best to continually check your camera’s manufacturer’s websites to make sure that you’re always using the latest firmware version.
Disconnect the Camera When Not in Use
Of course, we don’t recommend keeping your camera disconnected at all times. After all, having the camera connected is how it helps protect your home. However, there are certain times, such as when you’re at home, that it may not be necessary to have the camera connected.
Only Purchase Wi-Fi Cameras from Trusted Sources
There are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to shopping for a Wi-Fi enabled security camera for your home. Your best bet is to physically go to a store to purchase your camera. However, with how easy it is to shop online, many people decide to purchase their home security cameras this way.
While there are plenty of safe and reputable online stores to shop from, such as Amazon, Walmart, or Best Buy, there are also online stores that may be trying to sell you fake devices in order to spy on you.
With that said, make sure to always choose a reliable source when purchasing a home security camera.
Beware of Password Recovery Emails
As you probable know, most services have the options to recover your password by sending you an email notification. The problem here is that smart hackers and criminals can use these services to send you a fraudulent email in order to gain access to your camera’s password.
Therefore, if you receive any sort of password recovery emails, and you weren’t the one who initiated it, make sure to avoid opening any links in the email and delete it as soon as possible.
It’s also a good idea to report the sender’s email to the camera’s manufacturer.
Learn about other ways that hackers can crack your passwords.
Cover the Camera Lens if Not Needed
This goes for laptop and computer webcams as well: if you’re not currently using your security camera and have no need for monitoring your home at the moment, it might be a good idea to cover the camera lens with a piece of paper or tape.
This way, even if a hacker were able to gain remote access to the camera, they still won’t be able to see inside of your home.
Use a VPN
Lastly, the best way to ensure that your Wi-Fi enabled security camera, as well as any of your other devices, are protected, is to use a VPN.
A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, protects your devices by encrypting the connection between your devices and the internet. It acts as a sort of secure tunnel, where any information being sent or received by a device must pass through in order to reach to world wide web.
This makes it impossible for anyone other than you to access your Wi-Fi enabled security camera.