19 Oct Privacy Advocates Warn of Risks Brought by Kids Smartwatches
Last Wednesday, privacy organizations, child protection advocates, and consumer groups appealed to the US Federal Trade Commission to probe into the dangers that smartwatches pose to children.
The groups said that the watches capitalize on parents’ need to keep their children safe, but the device presents a number of security risks that makes them vulnerable to hackers and child offenders.
Josh Golin, a representative of the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood criticized companies that continuously manufacture such products without regard for the safekeeping of children’s private information.
Research by the Norwegian Consumer Council showed how children’s smartwatches can be infiltrated to access stored data, used to eavesdrop on conversations, and even communicate with a child. The organization also pointed out that “geofencing,” a feature that alerts parents when a child leaves premises, does not function as promised.
Last year, the same coalition of privacy groups opposed the distribution of online dolls. The toys were later removed by sellers from stores.