safety

Who's monitoring your baby monitor?

Nov. 24, 2010 at 9:39 AM ET

TODAY has a report on how easy it is for strangers to pick up your baby monitor feed and see inside your home. Most baby monitor signals are powerful but simple, so anyone outside your house with their own monitor can pick up your feed. WNBC reporter Tom Llamas drove through a Long Island neighborhood and did just that, capturing video of cribs, sleeping babies, and even picking up household conversations. Llamas warns of “the danger many parents are bringing into their homes.”

 

Really? With all respect to our NBC colleagues, what is the danger here? Obviously no one wants to be snooped on. But if burglars want to know when you’re not home, they could just, you know, watch your house from the outside. They don’t need a baby monitor for that. Likewise, you can’t really prevent creeps from looking at your baby -- unless you never leave the house.

(Personally, during the first few months of my son’s life, I was so happy anytime he slept more than a few hours at night I wouldn’t have cared if the whole neighborhood was huddled outside watching on a monitor.)

The safety precautions recommended in the report are a good idea: Buy a monitor with a single digital lock, if you can; turn off both the receiver and the camera when not in use; and always keep the camera pointed at the crib and not in a wide shot. But of all the things moms have to worry about, should strangers watching our baby monitors top the list?

What do you think? Am I missing something here? Are you concerned about who might be snooping on your baby monitor? Will you change how you use the monitor after watching the report? Have your say in the comments.

(On a related but random note, here's a link to my favorite baby monitor story: a Chicago-area mom who started getting NASA space shuttle feeds on her video monitor.)

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