We hate to be the bearer of bad news, but that Smart TV you recently bought after capitalizing on a huge Black Friday deal may turn out to be a portal for hackers to spy on you.
Last week, the FBI's Portland field office warned Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers of the potential risks that come with owning a Smart TV. In addition to the inherent danger that your TV manufacturer and/or app developers could pose, there's the prospect that hackers could utilize some of the features on newer models to their advantage.
The existence of a microphone and camera in a Smart TV was solely meant to make life easier for the viewer, but placed in the wrong hands, these features can have an adverse effect.
"Hackers can also take control of your unsecured TV," the FBI wrote. "At the low end of the risk spectrum, they can change channels, play with the volume, and show your kids inappropriate videos. In a worst-case scenario, they can turn on your bedroom TV's camera and microphone and silently cyberstalk you."
The FBI suggests a number of preventative measures that customers can take, like being knowledgeable of their device's security settings, creating unique network passwords that vastly differ from one provided by the manufacturer, and learning how to enable and disable the TV's microphones and cameras.
If these concerns over your security become too much to bear, you could always just put that Smart TV back in its box.