Is Your Home Security System Spying On You?

Featured | A hacker in the dark breaks the access to steal information and infect computers | Is Your Home Security System Spying On You?

Find out how hackers can turn even the best home security system against you with a cheap piece of hardware.

RELATED: Perfect Spots To Set Up Your Home Security Cameras

In this article:

  1. Can Your Security System Be Hacked And Used To Spy On You?
  2. How Hackers Can Spy On You
  3. What Can We Do?

How Safe Is Your Home Security System Against Hackers?

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Can Your Security System Be Hacked And Used To Spy On You?

Can you trust the home security system you have? Turns out, you really can’t.

Recently, I switched security systems in my home. I quickly switched back when I felt the company controlling my home security system didn’t have my best interest in mind.


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Little did I know it wasn’t them I had to worry about!

I have what was supposed to be the cutting edge of security systems for homes. I can control my alarm from my phone.

Also, I can turn lights on and off. I can even control my air-conditioned unit if I am feeling too lazy to get out of bed and change the temperature manually.

 

This high-tech security camera systems should protect my home and my family. I should feel safe knowing that should anyone enter my home without my permission, both the police and I will be notified.

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Does it make any sense my entire security system can be compromised by a single $10 piece of equipment which can be bought on amazon.com?

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RELATED: Proven DIY Home Security Tips To Protect Your Family

How Hackers Can Spy On You


An article published on Forbes.com exposed a massive flaw in most major home security systems:

He was able to play around with an ADT system thanks to the graciousness of his girlfriend’s father, who had one at home. The different vendors’ products all had the same problem: legacy wireless communications from the 90s that failed to encrypt or authenticate signals.

He could pick up the signals being sent from sensors on windows and doors to the main control system using a cheap SDR, meaning he could see transmissions from sensors—which are sent even when the system is unarmed—and track when people were opening and closing windows and doors.

With a more sophisticated SDR, he could interfere with transmissions, setting the alarm off falsely by telling it doors were opening when they weren’t or jamming the system so that it wouldn’t go off, even if doors did open. He could do this from 65 to 250 yards away—basically a house over.

Using his methods, a would-be tech-savvy thief could suppress an alarm while going in and out with your stuff; a prankster neighbor could set your alarm off, or someone could monitor when you’re active at the house. At the very least, someone with an SDR could determine based on signals being sent whether you actually have an alarm system, or have just planted a “Protected by ADT” sign in your front yard.

What is SDR? SDR stands for software-defined radio. It is a radio communication system wherein software takes over the tasks of the hardware.

What Can We Do?

We now know, more cameras and surveillance systems do not translate to a more secure place. Even some of the most high-tech and top home security system are susceptible to hacking.

There’s a saying, “Love many but trust few”, which is perfect when it comes to your security. Be reasonably annoying towards your home security system provider and ask questions.

Take advantage of the competition in business. Look for home security system providers with your best interest at heart–who are one step ahead of potential hackers.

In this video, marketplace reveals how hacker uses technology to spy your home and family courtesy of CBC News:

How secure do you feel about your home security system now? Your guess is as good as mine.

Do you think we can still trust home security systems with cameras? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

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Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on August 4, 2014, and has been updated for quality and relevancy

11 Responses to :
Is Your Home Security System Spying On You?

  1. Ashley B says:

    This is why I have a dog. No way to hack a German Shepherd. Yet. Just hope some hot headed cops don’t decide my girl is dispensible should they decide to enter my yard without a warrant

    1. Don says:

      I agree, I worry more about cops entering my property wrongly and harming my pets because they “felt threatened”.

    2. Weasel says:

      Hack a dog? Easy, chunk of poisoned meat.

  2. Mark says:

    So what are alternatives???

  3. Doctari Yojimbo says:

    The alternative is security in depth. Most people rely on one or two things to keep them secure. But that doesn’t work, locks can be picked or broken, dogs can be drugged or killed, and as we see here security systems have their limits as well.But if you use all these things together and make sure that they PROPERLY installed and used then you might have a chance. Of course any measure is useless if you don’t use it properly or at all. You know like for getting to turn on the alarm at night, or leaving doors unlocked, or not making sure your dog is properly trained.
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    +

  4. Anonymous says:

    The exact reason why I installed a WIRED security system in my new home.

  5. John Demeter says:

    nothing like the old fashioned wired security system without internet connection

    1. SStuka says:

      The more security measures that you take the better: security cameras and lights, locks, dogs, guns. The best canine early warning system is a chiquaqua, which is also low maintenance, travels well if mobile, and is the dog you want inside your home or shelter. A medium to large dog is great for the outer perimeter of your property and can possibly double for hunting. Cameras and lights should be powered by at least two different means for backup. As for guns, whatever you have, always keep it within reach, since you never know who might be crashing through your door or window. Of course, each situation is a little different, but the main idea is to put up various levels of deterrence, depending on level of threat(s).

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