If hackers can take control of a baby monitor, what could they do with an Internet-connected stroller that wheels itself around?
The Smartbe stroller, a hands-free baby carrier that uses motion tracking, is activated via a smartphone app and follows mom and dad along as they run or walk. The device comes equipped with lots of other nifty features -- like a radio, battery charger and bottle warmer.
The folks behind this "intelligent" stroller are currently trying to raise $80,000 on Indiegogo to get it made -- and they assure would-be buyers that the Smartbe is safe. If the Smartbe goes rogue, for example, a “stop cord” that connects to the wrist of a parent or nanny will detach and immediately halt the stroller.
But physical objects that connect to the so-called Internet of Things are exposed to a raft of digital threats. Recent cyberattacks on such "smart" objects show that connectivity can sometimes come at the expense of security.
Smartbe's developers did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Huffington Post.
Internet-connected baby products have proven particularly vulnerable to online attacks. Just this month, someone hacked into a family’s baby monitor in Washington and, to the parents’ horror, began speaking to the child, according to the San Francisco Globe.
The same thing happened to an Indiana family in September, local outlet Fox 59 reported. After the attack, research group Rapid7 conducted an audit of internet-connected baby monitors. Nearly all of the devices tested were found to be highly vulnerable to hacking. The researchers wrote in their report that defects in the monitors were “trivial to exploit by a reasonably competent attacker.”
If the Smartbe meets its funding goal, it's expected to ship in December. It'll sell for $2,750.