California man recounts terrifying moment a woman hacked into his Nest camera and threatened to steal his toddler son
Jack Newcombe expressed his frustration with Google, which owns Nest, saying their customer support was of no help whatsoever about the breach
A California father has opened up about the horrifying experience when a woman hacked his Nest camera and threatened to steal his 18-month-old son.
Writing about his ordeal in The Mercury News on Friday, Jack Newcombe, the president of an independent media and syndication company, recounted how his toddler son was at home with the nanny while he and his wife were at work when the security camera system started speaking all of a sudden.
"The voice is laughing when it chimes in. She says we have a nice house and encourages the nanny to respond. She does not," Newcombe wrote. "The voice even jokes that she hopes we don't change our password. I am sick to my stomach."
According to him, the female hacker was enraged when the frightened nanny refused to answer.
"The voice starts to get agitated at the nanny's lack of response and then snaps, in a very threatening voice: 'I'm coming for the baby if you don't answer me, bi**h!'" he wrote.
Newcombe became worried when the nanny texted both him and his wife asking if they were the ones speaking through the device.
When he pulled up the video feed, he could clearly hear the woman speaking to his son via the kitchen camera and using expletives while at it. "It feels as though my heart is about to beat through my chest. The blood rushes to my face. I am completely helpless," Newcombe said, describing the experience.
The embattled father was left with no choice but to unplug the cameras and change all passwords. Furthermore, he instructed the nanny to take their son to a park down the street for their safety.
Newcombe later described his frustration with Google, which owns Nest, saying their customer support was of no help whatsoever about the breach. "I was on hold for an hour and eight minutes. I followed all directions and have subsequently received form emails in broken English," he wrote.
"Nobody from Google has acknowledged the incident or responded with any semblance of empathy. In every email, they remind me of two-step authentication."
"They act as if I am going to continue to use Nest cameras," Newcombe added.