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Image: Security Camera - Alarm Calgary
(updated April 2023)

Home security cameras have become increasingly popular in recent years, as they provide homeowners with an additional level of protection against theft and break-ins. However, like any other technology, home security cameras can be vulnerable to hacking if proper precautions are not taken. In this article, we will discuss some tips on how to keep your home security cameras hacker-proof.

1 Secure your Wi-Fi network: The first step in keeping your home security cameras hacker-proof is to secure your Wi-Fi network. This means using a strong password and changing it regularly. It's also important to make sure that your Wi-Fi network is encrypted with WPA2 or WPA3. This will ensure that only authorized devices can connect to your network.

2 Use two-factor authentication: Two-factor authentication is an extra layer of security that requires a user to provide two forms of authentication before accessing an account. This can include a password and a fingerprint or a password and a code sent to your phone. Enabling two-factor authentication on your security camera app can make it more difficult for hackers to gain access to your cameras.

3 Keep your firmware updated: Firmware is the software that controls the functionality of your security cameras. It's important to keep your firmware updated to ensure that any security vulnerabilities are addressed. Check your camera manufacturer's website regularly for firmware updates and make sure to install them as soon as they become available.

4 Change default login credentials: Many security cameras come with default login credentials, such as "admin" and "password". Hackers can easily gain access to cameras that have not had their default credentials changed. It's important to change your login credentials to something unique and complex that only you will know.

5 Use strong passwords: Using strong passwords is essential to keeping your security cameras hacker-proof. Your password should be at least 12 characters long and include a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Avoid using easily guessable passwords, such as your name or birthdate.

6 Limit access to your cameras: Only allow trusted individuals to access your security cameras. This can include family members, trusted friends, or professional security personnel. Avoid sharing login credentials or allowing unauthorized access to your cameras.

7 Use a firewall: A firewall is a network security system that monitors and controls incoming and outgoing network traffic based on predetermined security rules. Installing a firewall on your network can help to prevent unauthorized access to your security cameras.

8 Disable remote access: Many security cameras come with a remote access feature that allows users to access their cameras from anywhere in the world. However, this feature can also make your cameras vulnerable to hacking. Consider disabling remote access and only accessing your cameras when you are on your home network.

9 Use a VPN: If you need to access your security cameras remotely, consider using a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN provides a secure, encrypted connection between your device and your home network, which can help to prevent unauthorized access to your cameras.

10 Use a separate network for your cameras: Consider setting up a separate network for your security cameras. This can help to prevent hackers from gaining access to other devices on your network if they are able to compromise your cameras. Or, prevent hackers from accessing your cameras if they do compromise other devices in your regular home network.

11 Purchase reputable camera brands: When purchasing home security cameras, it's important to choose reputable brands that have a proven track record of providing secure and reliable products. Research the manufacturer and read reviews from other users to ensure that you are buying a quality product that is less vulnerable to hacking.

12 Have security experts install your cameras: While many home security cameras are designed to be easy to install, it's important to consider having a security expert install the cameras for you. A professional can assess your home's vulnerabilities and provide recommendations on camera placement and network security. They can also ensure that the cameras are installed correctly and are properly integrated with your home's security system.

13 Monitor your cameras regularly: Regularly check the footage from your security cameras to ensure that everything is working properly and that there are no suspicious activities or unauthorized access. If you notice any issues or tampering, such as cameras that are offline or footage that is missing, contact your camera manufacturer or security expert immediately.

14 Use encrypted storage: Storing your security camera footage on encrypted devices or cloud storage can provide an extra layer of protection against hackers. Encrypted storage uses a special algorithm to scramble your data, making it unreadable to anyone without the encryption key. This can help prevent unauthorized access to your footage.

15 Enable motion detection: Enabling motion detection on your security cameras can help to conserve storage space and also alert you to any potential intruders trying to physically gain access to your cameras or network.

16 Consider using cameras with built-in privacy features: Some security cameras come with built-in privacy features, such as a physical shutter that can be closed to block the camera's view. This can provide an additional layer of protection against hackers and give you more control over when your camera is active.

17 Be wary of phishing attacks: Phishing attacks are a common tactic used by hackers to gain access to sensitive information. Be wary of any emails or messages that ask for your login credentials or other personal information, even if they appear to be from a legitimate source. Always verify the authenticity of any requests before providing any information.

18 Limit access to your Wi-Fi network: Limiting access to your Wi-Fi network can help to prevent unauthorized access to your security cameras. Consider setting up a guest network for visitors that is separate from your main network. This can help to keep your cameras and other devices on your network secure.

19 Educate yourself on the latest security threats: Staying informed about the latest security threats and vulnerabilities can help you to stay one step ahead of hackers. Regularly check security blogs and websites to stay up-to-date on the latest news and trends.

20 Don't forget physical security: While it's important to take steps to secure your home security cameras against hackers, don't forget about physical security. Make sure that your cameras are mounted in a secure location and are not easily accessible to potential intruders.

In conclusion, hackers are continuously searching for vulnerabilities to exploit, and thus, it is crucial to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to keep your home security cameras secure. Achieving this requires a combination of proactive steps and smart security practices. By following the tips mentioned above, you can ensure that your cameras remain secure and your home stays protected. It is always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to home security.

Article by Calgary Security Systems Inc. - a local alarm system company that has been serving Calgary, Airdrie, Strathmore, Okotoks, Bragg Creek, Cochrane, and nearby areas since 2004.

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