As a society, we’re continually adopting new forms of smart home technology which is designed to simplify our lives. From smart lighting and climate control systems to fridges, washing machines, entertainment systems and other household appliances, the possibilities for home automation are seemingly endless.
The dawn of smart doorbells
Now, even the humble doorbell can be adapted into a smart device which allows you to view and speak to visitors to your home remotely through your smartphone. While there are a few smart doorbells on the market, Amazon’s Ring doorbell seems to be the one that’s been the most widely adopted by Australian households.
While the technology might be a welcome addition for many families who want to be able to check if a package they ordered has arrived, whether the kids came home from school on time or even to check if it’s safe to open the door to someone, it does raise one major security concern—can your Ring doorbell be hacked?
Unfortunately, just like any type of internet-connected device, Ring doorbells do carry the potential for hacking.
Here’s what you need to know…
How can your Ring doorbell be hacked?
The main way hackers can gain access to Ring devices is by accessing the network they’re connected to. As the data being sent between the doorbell and the Ring application is not encrypted, hackers can gain access to your doorbell and monitor everything that happens at your front door or even access your Wi-Fi password.
Data breaches are another culprit. There have been cases where customers have used the same login credentials for their Ring account as they use for other accounts, only to have their details leaked or stolen (not necessarily from the Ring client database), allowing people to gain access to their Ring accounts using credential stuffing cyberattacks.
What can a hacker do once they gain access?
Once a hacker has gained access to a Ring doorbell, not only will they have unrestricted access to monitor all movement and activity at the front of your home, but they could also potentially use the technology to feed you an image of someone you know to convince you to open the door to a stranger.
As the devices also allow two-way communication, a hacker may also be able to speak to you through the device. In fact, this issue has become so rife that there is currently a class-action lawsuit in progress from more than 30 complainants who claim their Ring devices were hacked and used to harass them.
A smarter approach to home security
While installing a Ring doorbell can offer some benefits for your household, as home security experts, our main word of wisdom would be never to rely on it as a security tool as it could, in fact, achieve the opposite effect.
Rather than relying on your doorbell as a security tool, you’re better off installing a fit-for-purpose home security system which offers a far more superior and comprehensive level of protection.