Houston's "inchworm bandits" create performance art while robbing restaurants on their bellies

CCTV footage from a wave of after-hours robberies in Houston has birthed a viral sensation, thanks to the robbers' tactic of commando-crawling on the floor, which has led to them being dubbed the "inchworm bandits." Read the rest

ICE and the DEA have secretly hidden cameras in some streetlights

Government procurement data reveals that US Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Drug Enforcement Agency have each spent tens of thousands of dollars on products from Houston's Cowboy Streetlight Concealments LLC, which specializes in fake streetlight housings designed to conceal surveillance cameras. Read the rest

Spectacle frames that reflect infrared light, blinding CCTV cameras

Eccentric spectacle-maker Scott Urban kickstarted his Reflectacles in 2016: ray-ban-style frames inset with highly retroreflective material that is visible from hundreds of meters and strobes under a flash, making for fantastic photos. Read the rest

Security researchers can access and modify security footage from Nuuo surveillance systems

Nuuo is a leading vendor of "trusted video management" tools used in conjunction with CCTVs deployed in sensitive applications like surveillance of "transport, banking, government, and residential areas." Read the rest

Who is this mysterious shackled woman ringing doorbells in Texas?

(UPDATE HERE)

Police in Montgomery County, Texas are searching for this mysterious woman who was apparently ringing multiple doorbells in the middle of the night at a subdivision over the weekend. Read the rest

Trou: a soft, CCTV-bugged interactive sculpture that you ram your hand and arm into

Trou is an interactive sculpture from Valencia, Spain's Mireia Donat Melús: the nylon and silicon fiber blob invites viewers to don a surgical glove and insert their hands and arms into an elastic orifice in the sculpture's surface -- and watching their probing appendage from within via a live video-feed. Read the rest

Calgary malls caught secretly using facial recognition to characterise shoppers' age and gender

Calgary's Chinook Centre and Market Mall -- operated by Cadillac Fairview -- have been caught running background software that analysed the footage from the CCTVs in the malls' electronic directories to guess at the age and gender of visitors, without consent or notification. Read the rest

Self-hacking Internet of Shit camera automatically sends randos the feed from inside your house

Last week, I wrote about Shenzhen Gwelltimes Technology Co's ubiquitous "home security" cameras that can be hacked with ease by voyeurs and criminals, seemingly the last word in dangerously lax security -- but here comes scrappy underdog Swann Security, with a hold-my-beer turning point in shitty technology designs: a self-hacking camera that nonconsensually sends the video feed from inside your home to strangers who didn't even try to hack you. Read the rest

Over 55,000 security camera DVRs are vulnerable to an exploit so simple it fits in a tweet

Last month, Argentinian security researcher Ezequiel Fernandez published CVE-2018-9995, a vulnerability he discovered in dozens of brands of DVR that are all based on the same white-label devices, TBK's DVR4104 and DVR4216.

Read the rest

Self-powering camera: an image sensor that's also a photovoltaic cell

A team of University of Michigan electrical engineering/computer science researchers have published a paper (Sci-Hub mirror) detailing their work in creating a camera sensor (a device that converts light to electricity) that's also a solar power cell (also a device that converts light to electricity). Read the rest

Floral CCTV wallpaper

knt​.​remembr is a pretty great track from Knxwledge, but man, what I would give to have that wallpaper! Update: thanks to Deb Chachra for identifying the source: Dan Funderburgh's "Vigilant Floral".) (via Dark Roasted Blend) (Hi rez) Read the rest

Seattle spends five years failing to come up with a privacy policy for its $3.6m surveillance network, then spends $150k ripping it out

Five years after activists forced Seattle's mayor to return the city's surveillance drones to their manufacturer, the city has announced that it is terminating its warrantless mass-surveillance program altogether. Read the rest

News report claims Dutch spies hacked Russian cyberwar operation and pwned their CCTVs, then recorded video of Russian government hackers attacking the DNC

Dutch left-leaning daily de Volkskrant has published a remarkable -- but thinly sourced -- report claiming that a Dutch spy agency called the General Intelligence and Security Service of the Netherlands (AIVD) hacked into the network of a notorious Russian spy group called "Cozy Bear" or APT29, thought to be an arm of the Russian spy apparatus, and obtained direct evidence of Russian state involvement in the hacking of the DNC during the 2016 US election campaign. Read the rest

Airbnb guests repeatedly discover hidden cameras in the homes they rent

As the new Wired Guide to Digital Security points out, finding hidden cameras is really, really hard, so the fact that several Airbnb guests have discovered them suggests that there are a bunch more that have never been spotted. Read the rest

Reminder: train slipstreams can suck baby strollers onto the tracks

Set the brake on your baby carriage, wheelchair, or wheeled luggage if you plan to take your hands off it. Don't want this to happen. Luckily, this one was empty. Read the rest

185,000+ IoT security cameras are vulnerable to a new worm

Persirai is a new strain of Internet of Things malware that infects more than 1,250 models of security camera, all manufactured by an unnamed Chinese manufacturer that has sold at least 185,000 units worldwide. Read the rest

Taser ships a pistol-holster sensor that triggers record mode in all nearby bodycams when cops draw their guns

The Signal Sidearm is a sensor designed to be fitted to a police pistol holster: when triggered, it wirelessly signals all nearby police bodycams to go into record-and-archive mode. It's made by Axon, the bodycam division of Taser International. Read the rest

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