Hacking

Children's smartwatch recalled over hacking fears

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The European Commission has recalled a brand of children's GPS smartwatch over "serious" fears they could reveal their location and personal details to hackers.

A report has revealed that Enox Safe-Kid-One smartwatches can be easily targeted by hackers hoping to steal data via unencrypted communications with an embedded mobile application. In addition, hackers could manipulate the devices to allow direct communication with the child or reveal their location via the in-built GPS.

As a result of the EC investigation, it was concluded that the watches do not comply with the Radio Equipment Directive and they have now been officially recalled across Europe.

The report revealed: "A malicious user can send commands to any watch making it call another number of his choosing, can communicate with the child wearing the device or locate the child through GPS.

"A malicious user can send commands to any watch making it call another number of his choosing, can communicate with the child wearing the device or locate the child through GPS."

The news has only heightened concerns among researchers, who have previously suggested that child-tracking watches have serious security flaws. Specifically, many of these watches including those that have been recalled make it possible to locate and track a child, as well as to set up alerts when children leave a specified area.

"You can also follow the route of your kid for the last 30 minutes, 60 minutes, etc, through recording and playback of movements," the smartwatch website states, describing some of its features.

However, manufacturer Enox has denied that there are any flaws in the watch's in-built security, stating that it had passed a range of extensive safety tests carried out by the German authorities before being put on the market.

Additionally, Enox stated that the version of the watch that was tested by the European Commission and subsequently recalled is no longer on sale, and that the recall advisory should therefore be updated to avoid hurting sales of the updated version.

Enox founder, Ole Anton Bieltvedt, added that he planned to launch an appeal to Iceland's consumer protection regulator via his distribution company in Iceland, due to the fact that this was the original body that raised the issue with the EC.

Commenting on his plans to respond to the recall, Mr Bieltvedt, added: "[We] have appealed to the authorities in charge with the demand that this test conclusion would be reversed."

About Lee Hazell

Lee Hazell is a cyber security consultant with a keen interest in anything tech or security related. Follow Lee on .

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