The new Wi-Fi enabled Barbie is making news again â€” and for all the wrong reasons.
The chief executive of MasterCard on Friday singled out the $75 Mattel doll as a security threat â€” the second time the tech-smart Barbie has run into trouble.
Ajay Banga said hackers can gain control of Barbieâ€™s voice and then â€œtalkâ€ to a child.
The hackers can then win the confidence of the kid and, under certain circumstance, attempt to gain access to your home, Banga told attendees at a cybersecurity conference at New York University.
â€œNow think about hacking into that Barbie doll remotely,â€ Banga added, â€œand telling your 3-year-old, â€˜Is your mom at home right now? Can you open the door for me? Iâ€™m coming.â€™â€‰â€
Mattel officials did not return calls on Friday seeking comment on Bangaâ€™s statements.
In December, it was reported that hackers could modify the app of the Wi-Fi Barbie and gain access to confidential passwords and info.
Mattel responded quickly to the problems and patched all such hack dangers, according to reports.
At the NYU conference, Banga touched on a number of topics, including the fact that MasterCard is a favorite target of hackers.
Cybercrooks, he said, attempt about 15,000 hacks of MasterCard systems a day.
Several of the most prominent names in cybersecurity said during the conference that most people arenâ€™t aware of the growing number of cybersecurity threats that theyâ€™re exposed to as manufacturers keep making products that hook up to the Internet.
One of the biggest vulnerabilities is the so-called â€œInternet of thingsâ€ â€” everything from TVs to refrigerators to vending machines that automatically connect to the Internet, and then transmit data to another source.
One panel included Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara as moderator, with Randal Milch, a fellow at the NYU Center on Law and Security, who was an adviser at Verizon, and Stephanie Yonekura, a former acting US Attorney for Californiaâ€™s central district.
Bharara recently brought more charges in whatâ€™s been called the largest hacking scheme ever discovered, when four hackers allegedly stole information from more than 100 million customers by hacking into JPMorgan Chase and other financial companies.