Back in the day the toys we would play with as kids were all pretty much offline. We had dolls, action figures, board games, playsets, and so on, and all of them did not require an internet connection to play with. These days things are different as toys come with accompanying apps and where things are more connected than ever.

However it seems that over in Germany, there are concerns over a doll called “My Friend Cayla” and with regards to privacy, so much so that the doll has since been banned from being sold in the country by German watchdog group the Bundesnetzagentur. The group has warned that because of the doll’s connectivity that hackers could use it to steal personal data over its unsecure Bluetooth connection.

The dolls have already been removed from stores and the group is warning parents who have already bought the doll to exercise precaution. According to Bundesnetzagentur President Jochen Homann. “Items that conceal cameras or microphones and that are capable of transmitting a signal, and therefore can transmit data without detection, compromise people’s privacy. This applies in particular to children’s toys. The Cayla doll has been banned in German. This is also to protect the most vulnerable in our society.”

So far we haven’t heard of any reports that the doll has been used to steal personal data, but we guess if there is a possibility that it could be used for such nefarious purposes, that does sound pretty scary.

Filed in General. Read more about Privacy.

User Comments