"Our customer database contains general user profile information including name, email address, encrypted password, secret question and answer for password retrieval, IP address, mailing address and download history," the announcement read.
The tech website Motherboard had an expert review the breach. According to an article reporting on the hacking, the stolen information "also includes the first names, genders and birthdays of more than 200,000 kids" and that "it's possible to link the children to their parents, exposing the kids' full identities and where they live."
The HereO GPS watch, advertised for kids 3 and up, says on their website it allows parents to "keep track of their young children's whereabouts at any time directly on their smartphone." Through the app, users can add other family members into their network. But according to research done by Rapid7 Community, due to inadequate protection, someone could "add their account to any family's group, with minimal notification that anything has gone wrong." This would allow the person with access to know "every family member's location, location history and be allowed to abuse other platform features as desired."
Similar concerns were raised over Hello Barbie's ability to listen and respond to a child and how the doll sends and receives information over the internet. According to a different Motherboard article, researchers uncovered "several flaws that could have allowed hackers to spy on children's conversations with the doll." These bugs were also fixed, said Motherboard.
In the Motherboard article about Hello Barbie, a researcher from the security firm Bluebox Labs, Andrew Blaich, encouraged parents to be extra careful with these types of smart toys,
"As more and more stuff is connected to the network and we're sending more stuff to servers that we don't know where they may be located and what sort of security is on them, the best advice for parents is to be careful and be aware of what information they're sending through internet connected devices," said Blaich.
Nick received a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communication at Dixie State University in Utah where we was Opinion Editor at Dixie Sun News. Now he interns for Deseret News National. Follow him on Twitter at