Live footage from improperly configured surveillance cameras is currently being streamed online, exposing numerous U.K. schools in the process.
According to a report from the Daily Mail Sunday, video from at least four schools is available on a website which hosts content from CCTV cameras throughout the world.
The website, which takes advantage of cameras that either have default credentials or no password, also shows content from hundreds of private businesses and homes.
“Among the schools on the US-registered site was St Mary’s Catholic Academy in Blackpool, attended by 1,188 pupils,” the article states. “Eight CCTV cameras in the playground, entrances and inside the school corridors could be accessed.”
“Last Wednesday afternoon, children at the infant school children could be seen leaving their classrooms and being picked up by parents from cameras at St Mary’s.”
While school administrators declined to comment on the issue when informed, at least one parents described the incident as “completely shocking.”
“It’s really bad, they’ve got cameras everywhere around the school,” the unnamed parent said.
A parent whose child attends Highfield Leadership Academy in Blackpool, which has at least seven unsecure CCTV cameras, argued that educators are failing to protect the school’s kids.
“Oh, my God,” the second parent said. “How can they be allowed to run so many cameras if they can’t look after the children the cameras are supposed to protect?”
The Daily Mail states that St Mary’s and Highfield have since changed their passwords, making their feeds unavailable to the site, while two other schools have temporarily taken cameras offline.
The issue is also raising concern given that more than 200 U.K. schools are known to have CCTV cameras installed in bathrooms.
The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office has since launched an investigation into the matter.
Although the website states that no cameras have been hacked, hosting footage from internet-facing cameras has previously been found to be in violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA).
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