‘Smart’ male chastity device can be controlled by hackers, users warned

The maker of a “smart” male chastity device has recommended using a screwdriver to break it open after warnings it can be locked remotely by hackers.

The Bluetooth-controlled Cellmate device can only be unlocked via an app. Its manufacturer, the Chinese company Qiui, issued a video titled “When nothing else works”, showing the screwdriver fix.

The company’s founder and chief executive, Jake Guo, said it was “simply not true” that users could get stuck in the Cellmate, which is marketed both as an anti-cheating and submission sex play device.

It follows a warning from researchers that the Cellmate, which clamps a metal ring around the genitals, is vulnerable to being exploited by hackers who could lock them en masse, potentially trapping thousands of users.

“In case you cannot contact our customer support, the second option is to break open the Cellmate cap with a screwdriver or similar, as demonstrated in the video on our website,” Guo said in a statement sent to AFP. “This will allow you to remove the pin lock and device.”

He added: “Compared to Cellmate, wearing a traditional chastity cage – often made of steel – with a classic padlock is much riskier. If you lose the key, you actually would need a grinder or bolt-cutter to remove the cage.”

Alex Lomas of Pen Test Partners (PTP), which released the research report, questioned the screwdriver manoeuvre, wondering whether the required angle was possible while wearing a Cellmate. “Also, it’s a bit close for comfort!” he wrote on Twitter. “Have you tried this for real?”

PTP also found other security flaws in the Cellmate that could expose user information such as names, phone numbers, birthdays and location data.

Smart sex toys and devices are among a wave of new “internet of things” products and appliances introduced in recent years that can be operated remotely. But their connectivity has also made them vulnerable to security breaches and privacy violations.

To guard against hacks, Guo advised Cellmate users to remove the Qiui app on their phones and replace it with an updated version.

“Every modern device can potentially be hacked nowadays,” he said. “When a possible security leak with a game console, PC, smartphone or social media app is discovered and reported, people don’t seem to have the tendency to stop using them.”

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