By B.N. Frank
Last week Amazon recalled hundreds of thousands of Ring cameras due to fire risk. However, the devices’ vulnerability to creepy hackers and dangerous pranksters are nothing new.
Amazon Ring Doorbell Hacked in Florida Swatting Incident
The troubles for Ring continue—this time involving an affair, a double homicide, and explosives…sort of.
In a Florida suburb Friday afternoon, local law enforcement received a call from a man confessing to hoarding explosives and killing his wife after seeing her cheat on him. Seemingly distraught, he gave them a play-by-play of the chaos unraveling. However, the crime didn’t happen. The call was made by someone who hacked into his Ring surveillance camera.
NBC 2 reported that Sarah Courtney, the supposed dead wife, was home when she got a call from local authorities asking if she was alive. Nearby, her children’s school went into lockdown and the neighborhood was swarming with law enforcement, according to The North Port Sun.
When authorities arrived at Courtney’s home, they found her unharmed and couldn’t decipher who the incognito caller was. Then the Ring camera started calling them names. It had been hacked and then used in a version of a swatting prank, an escalating, but similar type of prank to a series of Ring hacks that happened last year.
As seen in a video from NBC 2, officers walking out of Courtney’s home are met with a, “Yo, what’s up [sic],” and other insults. One officer turns around, looks awkwardly into the Ring camera, and waves. “Hello?” they say, seemingly confused.
The investigation is ongoing, however, Josh Taylor, the City of North Port’s communications manager, believes the doorbell hacker is based in Sweden.
Experts have warned that hackers can also start fires on computers, phones, and other power supplies. Hardwired devices are safer and more secure than wireless and “smart” devices. 5G and Internet of Things (IoT) applications are also are also extremely vulnerable to hackers as well (see 1, 2, 3, 4).
Activist Post reports regularly about unsafe technology. For more information, visit our archives and the following links:
- Wireless Information Network
- Electromagnetic Radiation Safety
- Environmental Health Trust
- Scientists for Wired Tech
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