Cybersecurity Expert Jailed For Hacking 400K Smart Homes, Selling Videos

Hackers target smart homes due to the increased interconnected devices with often insufficient security measures. 

Smart homes provide a wealth of personal and sensitive information, including access to security cameras, smart locks, and personal data stored on connected devices.

Cybersecurity researchers at BitDefender recently discovered that a Korean cybersecurity expert has been jailed for hacking 400K smart homes and selling private videos illegally.

Cybersecurity Expert Jailed

A 41-year-old Korean cybersecurity expert illegally accessed and distributed private videos from over 400,000 vulnerable residential “wallpad” cameras across 638 apartment complexes. 

He exploited smart home devices to control video security systems remotely.

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After boasting about hacking “most apartments in South Korea” on a hacking forum in November 2021 and providing proof, he demanded 0.1 Bitcoin for a day’s video footage from a single household.

Post by the Korean security researcher (Source – BitDefender)

The Korean hacker illegally accessed over 400,000 residential “wallpad” cameras, distributing private videos, including intimate scenes. 

As news spread, people covered cameras, fearing breach despite uncertain affection.

The hacker used overseas servers to sell explicit content anonymously but was arrested in late 2022. 

Investigators seized equipment containing 213 videos and 400,000 photos illegally filmed through hacked cameras.

Hacked clip (Source – BitDefender)

It emerged during the trial that the man had shown before how easily wallpads could be hacked by middle schoolers.

He argued that he leaked the data to sensitize people about security problems, but the court decided that he tried to make money with stolen private tapes. 

This led to a four-year jail term for him, which also required him to go through a sexual crime prevention program and disallowed employment with children, youth, or disabled for four years.

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Author: Tushar Subhra Dutta