Your Wi-Fi-Enabled DSLR Could Be Used by Others to Spy On You


If you’re the proud owner of a Wi-Fi-connected digital camera, there’s something you need to be aware of: your camera could be used to spy on you.

At the hacker conference Shmoocon 2013 last month, German security researchers Daniel Mende and Pascal Turbing reported on findings that Internet-connected cameras can easily be exploited and turned into spy cams.

Vulnerable cameras could be accessed and controlled by others through a web browser

Vulnerable cameras could be accessed and controlled by others through a web browser

The researchers were able to take advantage of a security flaw in the Canon 1D X DSLR, stealing information sent to a network from the camera and taking complete control over the camera itself.

Unlike computer servers, cameras do not contain logs that would allow unauthorized accesses to be detected and/or discovered after the fact.

Here’s a presentation (it’s nearly an hour long) in which the duo reports on their findings, detail how the attack is carried out, and share tips on how to keep your cameras and network connections secure:

YouTube user BobHousedorf2 summarizes the findings this way:

Basically, it comes down to: use WEP. If you buy a new Canon 6D, use WEP, or, if the 6D doesn’t support WEP, don’t buy it. (Or if it doesn’t support some form of advanced network connection encryption, like WPA).

The problem isn’t just with cameras that come with Internet connectivity, but also memory cards that add that type of connectivity to non-connected cameras.

(via Help Net Security via Boing Boing)

  • El_Fez

    “. . .and taking complete control over the camera itself.”

    Almost complete control. They’re not going to be able to monitor me too well with the lens cap on. . . . .

  • Mark O’Brien

    Since my lenses have lenscaps on them, all they would see is a black screen if they turned it on if I wasn’t using it.

  • Antonio Carrasco

    I use a high tech anti-spying device called a lens cap.

  • Kay O. Sweaver

    Even with a lens cap the mic still works, as does GPS.

  • Matt

    The also could not turn the camera on.

  • Zigmars Zilgalvis

    And? All wireless devices are to be associated with some degree of risk. And being obsessed with idea that somebody spies on you is not healthy.

  • JonSmeeth

    The 6d built-in wifi comes with wpa2 encryption, so what rubbish the author is spewing???

  • Joakim Bidebo

    Taking control and use it as a spy camera isn’t the big problem tho.
    It a lot worst if someone download all your photos or even wipe the memory card.

  • Zos Xavius

    sounds like much ado about nothing if you ask me

  • Igor Ken

    persecution complex can be cured.

  • musheey

    Which means not good if you are the journalist that try to uncovered the war or battlefield crisis with the wifi system. Once the enemy know your position via gps,they will targeted you first…

  • bob cooley

    I think I see a marketing opportunity here – a tin-foil lens cap and matching hat!

  • Norshan Nusi

    They can’t even change lenses.

    What if speedlight is attached, making it a strobe for parties?

  • Steve Call

    as Lori said I cannot believe that a stay at home mom can make $6420 in four weeks on the internet. did you look at this site,,, ………… BIT40. ℂom

  • Kestas Z

    So, who will be owner of photo taken by “hacked” gear?

  • SwedishKiwi

    If you’re so close you can use the camera’s wifi, I don’t think you need the GPS to see where they are…

  • rwerwerw

    wow…. inform the press wifi can be hacked!!!

  • wedweqe

    wifi can be hackked earthshaking news!!!
    and WEP can be cracked in no time.. the author has no clue.

  • 435435435

    well then setup it properly…. same goes for a PC with wifi.

  • 543543dddd

    wep can be cracked in seconds.
    use WPA2… the author has no clue