Experts warn hackers could be streaming security cameras, baby monitors and more online

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The word is out that hackers are getting in.

No doubt about it, hacking is scary.

"People don't know that this is a problem, so that's even scarier," said Tracey Hawkins, a local safety expert.

Urgent warnings from two internationally recognized cyber research groups spell it out: Not only are victims being hacked but what they may not realize is that footage from their security cameras, web cams, baby monitors -- anything connected to wifi -- could actually be live-streamed so anyone and everyone can see it.

"First of all, understand if you bring a camera into your home, you're taking the risk of someone being able to hack it and look inside your house," Michael Tabman said.

And the hacker isn't the only one looking, according to Tabman. The retired FBI agent actually pulled up a website for FOX4 where a hacker had posted a family's home security camera live.

"What this does is that it picks up unsecured cameras (in) different parts of the world," Tabman said. "And this one goes right into someone's house. And this is live. I've see it. I want to point out that I did not hack this. I didn't do anything to get in there. It's just open."

With the click of a mouse, hackers search for cameras by IP addresses or model numbers and hack in, many times using factory default passwords. And once they're in, you're on for thousands to potentially watch live.

"There is a way to get to these cameras, and you don't have to be that knowledgeable anymore to do that because there's people out there doing it for you," Tabman said.

Tabman said it's vital you set up a personal password immediately, and use one that's tough. Passwords that are more than 16 characters are the hardest to crack. And make sure your wifi network is secure.

"My goal is to educate people about products out there that are out there the technology criminals they can make criminalize lights a little bit harder than what it comes to targeting you," Hawkins said.

The experts said although hackers seem to be one step ahead, by paying attention to security you can protect yourself.

"No such thing as something that's completely hack-proof, no way to make your house burglar-proof," Hawkins said. "All you can do is make it harder for the criminal to access your privacy or your house."