Thursday, January 31, 2008

What is Video-Hams

Robert Schifreen is the author of Defeating the Hacker . He recently wrote about the The Age of the Video Ham . I posed few questions about the video-hams to him.

Who coined the word “Video-hams”?

Robert: As far as I’m aware, I coined the term in August 2006. Other people have written about the topic before, and I know that one person has used the term “philming” to describe it.

How does one define “Video-hamming”?

Robert: I define a video ham as someone who seaches the internet for IP-based security surveillance cameras which have not been secured, in order that they can watch the live footage.

How did he stumbled upon the problem ?

Robert Schifreen writes about it in a comment on his blog .

Robert: My interest in the subject was sparked a few weeks ago, when I was looking to buy some IP cameras for a client and decided to search the manufacturers’ websites for sample images so I could judge their quality. I soon realised that most of the manufacturers didn’t make such things available, but that there were plenty of unprotected cameras out there.

What measures should one take to protect themselves ?

Robert advices on protection measures .

Robert: My advice to anyone using an IP camera for surveillance is:

1. Use the camera’s in-built password protection rather than allowing the pictures to be streamed to the world.

2. Once you’ve set up the camera’s securely, test it by attempting to connect from outside your company’s network.

3. If you really want footage to be accessible over the internet, configure your firewall so that it can only be accessed by those who need to see it.

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