The BSI warns against extensively networked smart toys

The BSI warns against extensively networked smart toys

14. Dezember 2022 0 Von Horst Buchwald
The BSI warns against extensively networked smart toys

Bonn, December 14, 2022

Christmas is coming soon. In times of comprehensive networking of our everyday life, smart toys are very popular, which should not only enchant children with intelligent functions and interactions.

But beware: such toys often contain veritable eavesdropping technology. Audio and video snippets that were recorded via microphones and cameras can then end up on external servers without our knowledge

In the run-up to Christmas it is therefore also important to have these toys
carefully and protect them in such a way that your data and that of your loved ones are safe. You can find out how to do this in our "Good to know" and "Practically safe" sections. And then you can really look forward to Christmas!

BSI podcast on "Smart Toys"

In episode #26, the BSI deals with networked toys in its podcast "Update Available": "Smart Toys - when the teddy bear becomes dangerous". These toys, which will also be found under many Christmas trees this Christmas, are often connected to the Internet and have various sensors that they can use to record and send sensitive data, such as a camera or microphone. In the podcast, the moderation team Ute Lange and Michael Münz discusses with Martin Gobbin from Stiftung Warentest what protective measures you can take to keep yourself and your loved ones enjoying the game while at the same time protecting your own data. "Sometimes the stupid version is just the smarter choice," says Martin Gobbin, for example. "Then these dangers cannot happen."

"Update available", episode #26, "Smart toys - when the teddy bear becomes dangerous":

BSI basic tips: set up smart toys safely

The BSI not only provides you with basic knowledge about smart toys via its podcast, but also with the most important basic tips via its social media channels:
• Convince yourself when you buy whether the manufacturer will offer updates over the entire expected useful life, for example to close weak points and fix program errors.
• Before buying, make sure that the toy itself and associated services, such as mobile apps, offer mechanisms for protecting data. You can obtain such information, for example, via the app stores of your device.
• Set up your smart toy in a safe environment, for example in the guest WLAN of your home network. Never use unprotected, public networks. If possible, limit the toy's access to the Internet by password protection for the corresponding WLAN.
• Always overwrite preset passwords or manufacturer access codes with your own secure passwords.

In just one minute you can find out about the possible risks of smart toys in terms of data protection and IT security from the BSI:

You can also find more detailed information on the subject at the BSI: "Smart toys - learning aids or spies?" -of-things-smart-living/smart-home/smart-toys/smart-toys_node.html

We have the ultimate pre-Christmas tip for you: Although around one million toys are presented every year at the world's largest toy fair in Nuremberg, including around 60,000 new products - and there are certainly many smart toys. Nevertheless, the parenting magazine advises parents to resist the temptation to buy too many toys and instead rely on a few high-quality toys.

You can find more parenting tips for buying toys here: Spielzeug

Would you like more security tips and information for your digital everyday life: Verbraucherinnen-und- Verbraucher_node.html