A Mississippi family has reported that hackers broke into their Ring home security camera system and began verbally abusing their 8-year-old daughter.
Mother, Ashley LeMay, of Desoto County, Mississippi, recently shared a video with a local news station that she hopes will serve as a warning to other parents.
LeMay said that they had only owned the Ring surveillance system for a few days when hackers got into the system and began taunting her daughter over the camera’s microphone.
Little Alyssa LeMay began hearing a man’s voice in her room and she did not know where it was coming from. The hacker began telling the little girl to break her TV and to start destroying her room. But the girl became afraid and called out for her parents.
LeMay said the family bought the camera system so they could keep an eye on the house when they were not home, and they never expected hackers to be able to see inside their home.
In video the family shared with the media, a man can be heard telling the girl to say a racial slur, over and over. “Go tell mommy you’re a nigger,” the man says, adding, “I’m your best friend.”
The child’s father was dismayed by the incident and wondered how long the hacker had been watching the little girl.
“My daughter could’ve been changing in her room…It did not take them long at all to figure this out,” Mr. LeMay said. “Even the doorbell, they can hear what you’re saying. In our case, we were going out of the country and this happened the night before we were leaving and we’re left thinking, ‘what did he hear?’ He has access to all of our videos now.”
One failure upon installation of the system is that the family did not set up the two-factor authentication for login.
For its part, Ring released a statement saying security is a high priority:
Customer trust is important to us and we take the security of our devices seriously. While we are still investigating this issue and are taking appropriate steps to protect our devices based on our investigation, we are able to confirm this incident is in no way related to a breach or compromise of Ring’s security.
Due to the fact that customers often use the same username and password for their various accounts and subscriptions, bad actors often re-use credentials stolen or leaked from one service on other services. As a precaution, we highly and openly encourage all Ring users to enable two-factor authentication on their Ring account, add Shared Users (instead of sharing login credentials), use strong passwords, and regularly change their passwords.
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