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I have ordered one of these wifi cams however I am curious if anyone may have any input to offer on the security of the device as it relates to the network. My understanding is that they are set up through the Yi Home app, and that the camera is connecting outside the local network to the mobile application through the Yi servers. The camera is also able to be accessed from outside the local network via the app without any port forwarding being required on the local router. Personally I would prefer the ability to have the camera only be accessed on the local network through a VPN rather than having it exposed to the WAN. Does this seem like there may be reason for concern about possible intrusion into the camera since there is no way to block it from being accessed from outside the network?

YI Dome Camera Pan/Tilt/Zoom Wireless IP Security Surveillance System 720p HD Night Vision (US Edition)

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01CW4BG4K/ref=cm_sw_r_other_apa_7QmrybTS4SN36

  • Please add links to the product in question otherwise it can be difficult to help. – Julian Knight Dec 4 '16 at 17:36
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I think that, while I don't have direct experience with this camera nor with the manufacturer, recent knowledge would show that you would NEVER trust such a setup.

With the best will in the world, the reason for buying direct Chinese kit is because it is very cheap. That's fine, I do so myself. But I would never trust any "security" product (from any country actually) that required a vendor website connection over the Internet in order for it to work.

You will have to assume that other people will certainly have access to the output of the camera. You should also assume that others can take control of the camera or add it to one of the several known (and how many unknown I wonder) botnets out there.

If you can use the camera directly, make sure you configure your routers firewall to block outbound traffic from the camera. Use your router's DHCP settings to fix it's IP address while you are at it which will make it slightly easier.

The reason no router/firewall configuration is required for the WAN connection is that the camera makes a connection out to the vendors servers and then keeps that connection open. Well hopefully that's the case because the alternative is that it uses UPnP to open an inbound hole.


By the way, if you cannot use the camera directly, I strongly recommend you return it unopened. Because even if the security were OK, you will never actually own the camera, you will only be leasing it until the vendor goes broke or gets bored with running the service. Then all you have is another paperweight.

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