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Stranger swears at sleeping toddler though hacked baby monitor

Cyber espionage; Network intrusion

Two-year-old Allyson is deaf, so she did not wake up. “It’s somewhat of a blessing,” the father said of his daughter’s hearing impairment.

Marc Gilbert and his wife entered the child’s room after hearing a man cursing and making lewd comments in the bedroom.  They heard the voice calling the daughter an “effing moron,” and telling her, “wake up you little slut.”

Then, the hacker shouted expletives at them. The voice began calling Gilbert a stupid moron and his wife a b****.

 “The creepy voice — which had a British or European accent — was coming from the family’s baby monitor that was also equipped with a camera. A hacker apparently had taken over the monitor.”

 “At that point I ran over and disconnected it and tried to figure out what happened,” said Gilbert. “[I] couldn’t see the guy. All you could do was hear his voice and [that] he was controlling the camera.”

Parry Aftab, a lawyer specializing in internet privacy and security law, said that if monitors are connected to Wi-Fi, keeping a password is crucial. Otherwise, anyone can access the Wi-Fi–and therefore access the monitor as well.

Gilbert said he is leaving the device permanently unplugged. “I don’t think it ever will be connected again,” he said. “I think we are going to go without the baby monitor now.” 


Healthcare and Public Health; Telecommunications


August 13, 2013

reported by

ABC News

number affected


location of breach

Texas, United States



location of perpetrators


date breach occurred


date breach detected

August 10, 2013