How are security cameras around the world so easily accessible?



So today I saw the link of a website which apparently connects you to security cameras around the world. I want to know how is it possible? And since I did go to the website and did a few clicks (it was http), should I be concerned?

In: Technology

It only links up to cameras that people put on the web, the vast majority of cameras store their information locally and not on the web.

Most security cameras come default with the username as admin and the password as password. Many people don’t change these passwords. They broadcast to the web over http. Google and other web crawlers find these cameras. That website databases those cameras.

If a security camera is connected to the internet, all you need to know is its IP address to connect to it. Of course, if it encrypts its data (video and/or audio signal) before broadcasting to the internet, you won’t get any useful data, but if it doesn’t, you can just see what it sees and hear what it hears. You may need some software to understand its signal, but that’s not particularly hard to get.

Some security cameras intentionally disclose their IP addresses so anyone can see what it sees. Spiders also crawl through the internet looking for unsecured IP addresses that may be a security camera and connect to them. Either way, it’s trivial to generate a list of security cameras that anyone can connect to.

Because people are lazy and ignorant of the security risks involved in installing internet connected security cameras in their houses/business, and hackers like to hack.