November 18, 2020

People Buy Security Cameras to Increase Security

Doesn't always work out that way. Hacker makes false report of shooting, causing deputies to force entry into home

So a Ring doorbell was "hacked" and a SWATting call made.

“We get a call from someone who says they’re 13 years old, gives the name of the people who live there, and says he just shot and killed his father. So, we get there, we start giving verbal commands, commands over the speaker, knocking on the door. We actually see somebody crawling on the floor and we assume it’s the homeowner who’s been shot,” said Mancuso.

Mancuso says deputies burst through the door to possibly save someone’s life.

But it was all fake.

The cops are going on about "double security" so I am guessing that they did not have 2-factor authentication installed in their Ring system. I am also going to make a guess that they had an easy-to-guess password, because why go to all the trouble of having a password manager. It could only have cost them their lives in this case.

The moral of the story is two-fold. Get and use a Password Manager. LastPast and 1Password both allow for the coordination of passwords among family members. (I know exactly one family who went with 1Password.) You don't need to, and more importantly, you SHOULD NOT, use an easy-to-remember password for anything. And even if you just use SMS messages for 2-factor authenticaion, that is better than nothing. The last few incidents of SWATting I've read about ended up with the homeowner being shot and killed.

Cops also need to be better about this kind of thing. At least they didn't shoot anyone in this case.

By way of full disclosure, I use neither LastPast nor 1Password. I use KeePass. An open-source, trust-no-one solution that appeals to me. It isn't for everyone. It can be made to work with shared passwords among family, but I'm not sure that is its strength, but then again I have not delved into that aspect of things.

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