What is IP camera?
An Internet Protocol camera, or IP camera, is a type of digital video camera that receives control data and sends image data via the Internet.
They are commonly used for surveillance but unlike analog closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras, they require no local recording device, only a local area network. Most IP cameras are webcams, but the term IP camera or netcam usually applies only to those that can be directly accessed over a network connection, usually used for surveillance.
The captured could be stored on a cloud or in an SD slot card locally.
Types of IP cameras
Indoor and outdoor cameras, as the name explains, have different qualities. They could vary depending on the climatic factors, position (static or not).
Pros and cons when we use IP cameras
Ip cameras may use a Wi-fi connection or wireless network. It also could be managed and accessed remotely. Cheaper than higher-class cameras.
Potential risks and disadvantages
Starting with the concern that someone could break your privacy and "steal" your broadcasting, publish it online. Another thing is consuming large disk space to store captured data.
How security cameras are hacked ?
Your IP camera could be hacked easily. It's a fact! Most likely, people that installed a camera in their homes don't secure it with a complicated password and username.
There have thousands of unsecured cameras around the globe that are unprotected and exposed on the internet. Many users, even not hackers, could view everything that happens when you're cleaning, sleeping or any activity that your camera streaming.
Even you've hired someone to install a camera in your home or work, you have to insist to change the username and password (that usually are admin1 and 123456).
Passwords must contain as long as possible chars and not only numbers and letters.
No matter the securing, the brand of the camera, when you turned on a camera - it creates a risk.
There is no way to keep your safety on 100%. Any device connected to the internet is at risk. The best solution is to not streaming personal areas of your home or office, to follow instructions of the manufacturing company and to secure your access to the camera's settings. Purchase your camera from trusted shops and reputable brands to avoid the risk of buying already hacked cameras.
Update the firmware of your camera up to date. Visit the official website of the manufacturing company to grab the latest security upgrades.
Watch live home/office cameras
You may not have suspected, but hundreds of thousands of cameras are accessable illegally from sites and any visitor to those sites can watch the broadcast. Depending on where the camera is placed, these sites have categories that make it even easier to filter searches. This way, you can easily find cameras turned on from a specific country or city; location filters, etc.
In 99% of cases when a camera is placed publicly on such aggregator sites, cameras have not been protected with strong passwords and their owners have no idea that they are available globally.
These types of sites are illegal because they steal and broadcast content over which they have no rights. Although the owners have not changed the password and the default user, these website aggregators are not allowed to use the cameras.
Insecam and Opentopia are listing thousands of unsecured cameras and exist because they are hosted in countries where there is no regulation and the authorities are not interested in such issues.
How does Insecam detect cameras?
Through an algorithm that tests different networks and when it detects a broadcast camera, it then tries to "unlock" it using an easily recognizable password and username.