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security cam data leak
© Shao-chun Wang |
Security & privacy

Have this security cam at home? You should probably stop using it

Tech makes for great Christmas presents, but be careful — you may be giving your loved ones more than they wish for. Here are the five worst and five best tech devices regarding privacy. 

Among the biggest offenders that have made headlines recently is Eufy, a subsidiary of Anker. The company sells smart locks, doorbells, cameras, hubs and more.

Eufy has been accused of playing fast and loose with its customers’ privacy, and the latest discovery is concerning, indeed.

Here’s the backstory

In June, security experts found three vulnerabilities in Eufy’s Homebase 2 video storage and management device that could allow hackers to take control of the device remotely, reboot your hub or even send your security camera footage to anyone they choose. Eufy has since patched the problems. Tap or click here for our report.

Until recently, Eufy had a privacy policy stating all user data was stored locally with no cloud access. But in November, a security researcher tweeted he was able to stream and watch Eufy camera footage via the free VLC media player:

Eufy changed its privacy policy this month, removing many vital entries. Compare a snapshot of the page from early December to its current state and you’ll see that the following lines are missing:

  • “To start, we’re taking every step imaginable to ensure your data remains private, with you.”
  • “There is no online link available to any video.”
  • “Your video recordings will not be viewed, shared, or used by eufy for any other purpose.”
  • “In response to legal requests from law enforcement agencies, we will not, without the customer’s consent, disclose video recordings unless it is necessary to comply with the law or if there is an emergency involving imminent danger of death or serious physical injury to a person.”

Additionally, Eufy removed an entire section from its FAQ: “Does Eufy sell customer information to third parties?” The answer was “No.” In its place is the question “Does eufy share video recordings with third parties?” The answer is still “No” but law enforcement isn’t mentioned at all.

RELATED: Have a Ring camera? Police can get your footage without permission in some situations

Eufy denies any wrongdoing, of course. If you have any Eufy devices, you should probably disconnect them until more information is available.

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