Research Shows Police Body Cam Footage Can Be Altered By Hackers

patrol eyes police camera.jpg

Police cameras are a hot button issue. Many applaud the use of the cameras as a way of transparency. Police wield certain power and it shouldn't go unchecked. But mostly, body cameras are there to review a situation AFTER something has gone horribly wrong. 

The entire point of having cameras mounted to police officers is for people to see what really happened. They're impartial and just show the scene as it happened. That's the real beauty of them. You can't distort the facts. Or can you... 

A cybersecurity consultant from tech company Nuix, named Josh Mitchel made an appearance at the DEF CON conference on August 11th. For those of you not in the know, DEF CON is one of the world's largest hacker conferences. It's been held once a year in Las Vegas since 1993. Mr. Mitchel gave a speech at this year's DEF CON titled "Ridealong Adventures--Critical Issues With Police Body Cameras" and in that speech, he talked about the vulnerabilities of body cameras made by Vievu, Patrol Eyes, Fire Cam, and CeeSc. Three of those devices listed above have wi-fi, while the CeeSc WV-8 does not. 

What he discovered with some of those cameras, is that you can remotely hack into them, download the footage, re-edit and then re-upload to the camera -- with no evidence that the footage has been tampered with. It wouldn't matter if you saw a cut or an edit on the footage as there would be no proof that the footage had been altered. 

Models from market leader Axiom weren't tested and models from Digital Ally proved to be currently un-hackable. This is a big deal. T

In an article with Wired Mitchel states:

"These videos can be as powerful as something like DNA evidence, but if they're not properly protected there's the potential that the footage could be modified or replaced," Mitchell says. "I can connect to the cameras, log in, view media, modify media, make changes to the file structures. Those are big issues."

I hope the powers that be are listening and that the right precautions are being taken, as this could render any impartialness null and void. 

Source: WIRED