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Fort Huachuca Police body cam footage easily accessible after an eBay purchase

By: - July 2, 2020 3:31 pm
KF Axon body-worn camera

Screenshot via Twitter

A security researcher was able to access files on a Axon body-worn camera he purchased from eBay that had video files of Fort Huachuca Military Police officers conducting investigations and filling out paperwork.  

The files were able to be extracted after the researcher, who goes by KF on Twitter, was able to remove a microSD card from the body-worn camera. KF was then able to extract the un-encrypted files, which were not protected by a password, using a tool called Foremost.

KF shared screenshots of the footage he was able to pull from the cards that appeared to show members of the Fort Huachuca Military Police entering a person’s home and filling out paperwork. 

“We are aware of this issue and have launched an investigation looking into the matter,” a statement from Scottsdale-based Axon said to Arizona Mirror. “We are also reevaluating our processes to better emphasize proper disposal procedures for our customers.”

The camera that was purchased by KF was an Axon Body 1, one of the company’s earliest generation models that launched in 2013. The company said it stopped the model in 2015.

“Our latest generation camera, Axon Body 3, offers enhanced security measures such as storage encryption to protect video from being retrieved from lost or improperly disposed cameras,” the statement said. 

“[I]s this real life?” KF said in one of his tweets alongside an image of what appears to be an officer filling out paperwork. 

KF Axon body-worn camera
Screenshot via Twitter

It is unclear what year the footage is from, and a request for comment from the Fort Huachuca Military Police Department was not returned. It is unclear how the Fort Huachuca body camera ended up on eBay. 

But this isn’t the first time police technology has ended up on eBay. 

Cellebrite, a technology utilized by law enforcement to brute-force hack the passwords of cell phones seized in investigations are available for as low as $40 on the site.

Cellebrite is a favorite tool of the FBI and DEA, and was used to crack the San Bernardino shooter’s cell phone.

A representative from eBay pointed the Mirror to the company’s electronic equipment policy, which allows cameras but states that sellers should wipe any data on the device before selling it and that “most electronic equipment used to transmit or receive signals or for surveillance is not allowed.”

eBay said Cellebrite devices are prohibited from being sold on their site, and it will be removing any listings of Cellebrite and body-worn cameras.

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Jerod MacDonald-Evoy
Jerod MacDonald-Evoy

Reporter Jerod MacDonald-Evoy joined the Arizona Mirror from the Arizona Republic, where he spent 4 years covering everything from dark money in politics to Catholic priest sexual abuse scandals. He brings strong watchdog sensibilities and creative storytelling skills to the Arizona Mirror.