A week before President Trump’s inauguration, hackers broke into and compromised police closed-circuit surveillance cameras, The Washington Post said this week. The hackers were able to infiltrate 123 out of a total of 187 cameras spread around Washington, D.C. and affected the storage on the devices.
Oddly, it doesn’t seem the hackers did much with the cameras except leave some malware behind, and it’s unclear exactly what was done with that malware. “On Jan. 12 D.C. police noticed four camera sites were not functioning properly and told OCTO,” The Washington Post explained. “The technology office found two forms of ransomware in the four recording devices and launched a citywide sweep of the network where they found more infected sites.”
One can easily understand why this might have been a major problem. If someone were to attack the city, for example, he or she could have used this hack to presumably take the cameras offline entirely. The attackers who gained access to the cameras could, and probably did, have access to the live feeds of each camera, too.
No safety risk
The Washington Post didn’t disclose who any potential suspects are right now. It could have been hackers simply trying to attack the system for bragging rights, or hackers trying to do so for far more nefarious reasons. A secret service official speaking with The Washington Post said nobody was ever at risk during the attack.