Holiday [Safe] Gift Guide

Holiday [safe] gift guide

Now that all the turkey leftovers are gone, welcome to the season of gift shopping and stocking stuffing. Looking for the perfect gift for [fill in the blank]? Consider being a little more careful this year when shopping for [fill in the blank]. (Seriously. Because you always need to be more careful).

Here’s what’s up:

VTech, the Hong Kong toy giant, had over 5 million of their accounts hacked recently.When users buy a gadget from VTech’s line of interactive toys, they are encouraged to make an account using their Learning Lodge app store, made specifically for their products. These accounts  harvest user’s names, birthdays, emails, and other personal info.

Since the hack, VTech has removed their apps from the app store and notified customers promptly. But once hacked, millions of kids (and parents!) personal information was just handed over to anonymous criminals who can treat it as they please.

It’s not just batteries hiding in that new toy, it could be a literal window into your child’s play space, and you dont know whos watching. This is a huge warning for people who still don’t realize how much data is sitting in even your kids cool looking new toys.

Kid's information compromised as a result of a hack
Kid’s information compromised as a result of a hack

On the topic of toy shopping, have you heard about Hello, Barbie? the timeless doll gets an upgrade and welcomed into the era of IoT.

But don’t be disillusioned that Barbie comes alone; Opening that package lets a slew of apps and networks into your life. You see, Barbie’s not just the doll herself. Gadgets these days are connected to a server somewhere, where the information that’s gathered from you when you interact with the device, is stored.

ToyTalk, in a quest to improve the voice recognition and Barbie’s conversational abilities, records everything that is spoken to her. Barbie get’s young and vulnerable kids to open up to a plastic doll who is a direct link to a server somewhere across the globe, where others are listening and storing all our children’s words and information. Even Barbie needs to be treated like a “device” with appropriate degrees of fear.


Retail Security Risks: not what you’re used to.

Stats and the rise in breachs and hacks show that today there over one million breachs around the world each day. In the season when online shopping is at its highest and we frequent with online transactions, make sure you are doing everything you can to stay safe and protect yourself and your family.

Wishing you a safe and happy holiday season!

The MyPermissions Team


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