Our Response to Ring Security Concerns

Jalesa Campbell
Updated Feb 17, 2021
2 min read
We are aware of the recent Ring privacy concerns and have reviewed our opinions following the multiple reported security camera hacks. Find out why we’re still standing by Ring security products and what you can do to protect your personal information from being stolen.

Here’s Why We’re Still Standing By Ring Security

We greatly understand the damage that Ring has potentially caused for some consumers. We still believe that Ring Security’s products are able to help you protect your home and family.

As a positive shift moving forward, Ring is planning to release a Control Center dashboard within the Ring app, allowing users to manage their privacy settings from a central location within the app. According to Ring, users will be able to “see and manage [their] connected mobile, desktop, and table devices, as well as third-party services.” Ring is planning to release this feature later this month.

For this reason and the company’s technical fix for the security issue, we’re still standing behind Ring Security cameras and products, and that’s why we’ve decided to keep them on our website and will continue to recommend them. Security companies must take responsibility for their products and consequences. Additionally, we highly encourage everyone to take steps to bolster their safety while using these products.

A Look Back: What Led to Ring's Privacy Issues?

One of the biggest conversations around Ring security today involves their video doorbells and privacy concerns. Multiple incidents have been reported of Ring cameras being hacked. One individual’s daughter was taunted by a hacker. These incidents don’t make an exception for Ring, but they definitely raise concern regarding any vulnerabilities present with the company’s technology.

Here’s a breakdown of this previous vulnerability with Ring Security.

The privacy issue involving Ring security cameras stemmed from an unsecure access point during configuration. Whenever someone would start setting up his or her Ring camera, the device would need to connect to the homeowner’s local network. Entering this information would be done through Ring’s mobile app.

This process is probably something you’re rather familiar with if you’ve ever had to connect a smart TV to your home internet—you would normally need to enter your network credentials.

From here, once the user entered their credentials to connect their Ring device to the Internet, the unsecure access point allowed nearby individuals to see and potentially steal the user’s information. Their network credentials were exchanged over HTTP protocol, which is unsecure, allowing for exposure.

A hacker could also trigger the user’s Ring camera to be reconfigured, prompting them to re-enter their credentials (once again, allowing the hacker to steal those details).

That was Ring Security’s vulnerability in a nutshell. If you want a closer look at the details, check out this whitepaper published by Bitdefender. So now that you have more background on Ring privacy concerns, here’s what you can do going forward to help prevent your security camera(s) from being hacked.

Looking Ahead: How to Prevent Your Security Camera From Being Hacked

Thankfully, there are measures you can take to protect your security camera(s) from being hacked. Here are some simple steps you can take:

  • 1

    Check for encryption

    Does your security camera support protected wireless protocols like a Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 (WPA2) connection? If so, excellent. You should also check to see if your camera uses secure Internet transmission through SSL/TLS for protecting your network credentials. If you’re sent to a login page for your security camera, make sure that the URL begins with “HTTPS” before entering your information.

  • 2

    Change your security camera’s default password

    This is highly important. If your security camera comes with a default password, find out how to reset it, and be sure to use a different password from the ones you are currently using to access other accounts. Making your password more complex lowercase letters, capital letters, numbers, and symbols can make your password harder for hackers to determine.

  • 3

    Be sure to install any software updates

    Lastly, consider registering your security camera and signing up for updates. You might be tempted to ignore them, but please don’t! These updates can protect your camera from being vulnerable to attacks.

Safety and Security Reporter

Jalesa Campbell

Jalesa is one of Safety.com's staff experts on home security, natural disasters, public safety, and family safety. She's been featured on Today.com and elsewhere.

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