Verkada biometric cameras hacked, prompting privacy concerns

Occurred: March 2021

Hackers have gained access to security company Verkada, giving them access to live and archived footage of over 150,000 cameras inside the firm's customers facilities across the world, as well as its own offices.

Carried out by a hacker collective which aimed to show the pervasiveness of video surveillance and the ease with which systems could be broken into, the breach involved gaining access to Verkada through a 'Super Admin' account, thereby allowing the hackers to view the cameras of all of its customers.

Some Verkada cameras use facial recognition as a basic capability to identify individuals, potentially exposing the sensitive personal information of its customers and the employees, patients and others being monitored. 

Verkada customers include Tesla, Cloudflare, Equinox gyms, hospitals, jails, schools, and police stations.

Operator: Verkada; Tesla; Cloudflare; Halifax Health

Developer: Verkada
Country: USA

Sector: Business/professional services

Purpose: Strengthen security; Identify individuals

Technology: CCTV; Facial recognition

Issue: Security; Privacy