'Critical security flaws' make kids' smart watches easy to hack 1 year ago

'Critical security flaws' make kids' smart watches easy to hack

Does your child have one?

They've become popular among all age groups, but a new study raises questions over the safety of smart watches for kids.

The devices allow parents to track and keep in touch with their children via an app on the parents' phone.

As with other smart devices, the watches store data relating to personal details and location.

Researchers at the Norwegian Consumer Council tested the security of children's smart watches by several brands and found some to be vulnerable to hacking.


Four brands - Gator 2, Tinitell, Viksfjord, and Xplora - were tested.

Each fell down in some areas of security and duty to users, though the researchers "did not discover explicit security vulnerabilities in the Tinitell device" in particular.

Due to a lack of encryption, hackers could easily access the whereabouts and details on some kids' smartwatches and even contact the wearers on some devices.

"Any consumer looking for ways to keep their children safe and secure might want to think twice before purchasing a smartwatch as long as the faults outlined in these reports have not been fixed," the researchers wrote in the report's conclusion.

The manufacturers claim the faults brought to light in the report are already being worked on, according to the BBC.

In response to the study, UK retailer John Lewis has taken kids' smart watches by Gator, one of the brands tested, off sale.

Consumer group Which? said parents would be "shocked" at these findings.

"Safety and security should be the absolute priority. If that can't be guaranteed, then the products should not be sold," spokesperson Alex Neil said.