QuarkENess's profile

Wed, Jan 19, 2022 1:40 AM

Mysterious ESP_######## SSID

My understanding is that the base station includes an espressif wifi chip whose purpose is to connect to a network specified by the user in order to get updates. But our base station has created its own SSID with the name like ESP_A123A5(01:3b:59:f2:34:8e) .  (The italicized characters have been changed). It isn't always available, it has appeared and disappeared multiple times. It is definitely is coming from the base station and it is an open network. I was able to join the network using a smartphone and no password.

Has anyone else seen this or have an explanation?

Captain

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4.6K Messages

Il y a 7 m

The short answer to this specific question is a solid "no" but I can tell you whenever I have discovered some odd things, a phone call support got me an answer. Note, this always did not happen on the first call. On several occasions I was sold they initially didn't know the answer but always did get back to me. Given that SS has many new agents in their expanded support organization, a good thing, the experience level varies from novice to pro so you may have to get a call back.

If you do call and get a response, please post your outcome here so we can all benefit. Thank you.

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

Il y a 7 m

Hi QuarkENess,

If you're up to date on Base Station firmware, you should now be seeing your SimpliSafe devices labeled as "SimpliSafe". Are you sure that the device is your SimpliSafe Base Station? What happens if you block it?

13 Messages

Il y a 7 m

Our base station is at 2.5.2 with the wifi module at 2.11.6.

We actually aren't connecting our base station to our wifi right now because we have experienced some irregularities on our router that suggest a security breach. The SSID is definitely coming from our base station. We used a wifi network analyzer app to pinpoint the source and it peaked when the phone was place on top of the base station.

So our question is: does the base station ever broadcast an open SSID starting with ESP_ or is this a sign that something is wrong with our base station?




Captain

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4.6K Messages

@QuarkENess​ Great question, as I am on the latest firmware and, after just checking, can confirm my base is nowhere to be seen by name and, yes, it is connected to WIFI and cell backup works. Davey??

(edited)

7 Messages

@QuarkENess​ the real answer is yes it does and mine does it also.  Therefore it is not safe at all.  Ironic how simply not safe it is.

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

Il y a 7 m

@QuarkENess ,

Heard back from our devs. So as I mentioned, your Base Station should be showing up as "SimpliSafe" on your router's list, but that might not happen for all routers. The "ESP_" label does indeed refer to the espressif WiFi chip that the Base Station uses.

But if you're concerned, you can double-check that the correct MAC address matches what's listed on your router. On the Keypad Menu, navigate to System Settings > Diagnostics > WiFi, and you'll see the Base Station's MAC there.

78 Messages

Il y a 7 m

But wait, did I misunderstand the OP - His base station is TRANSMITTING on a WiFi SSID by this name and said Wireless network can be joined?

As in his base station is acting as a router or WiFi extender?

The only thing the base should be transmitting on besides the cell modem is the network for the sensors correct and this should not be seen on a normal WiFi band and should be encrypted (secured) assuming G3 basestation...

I can also confirm that my base station does not create a wireless network.

It does show up as SimpliSafe_Basestation in the category IOT (Internet Of Things).

My router does remember a prior base station as Expressif under a category of Security Device.

Maybe I totally misunderstood...

13 Messages

@krstrick​, you got it exactly right. Yes, my base station is TRANSMITTING.

Why would it do that?

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

Right, the Base Station shouldn't be transmitting WiFi SSID.

Our engineering team asks, could it be possible that you're picking up a Bluetooth signal, rather than WiFi? The Base Station's wireless chip does have bluetooth capability as well.

13 Messages

No. My Wifi analyzer doesn't scan bluetooth.

13 Messages

Tech support said to write to a supervisor @ HQ and get them to call me.

(edited)

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

Ah, this would be a little above the expertise of our Support team. But I'm relaying your info to our engineers and hopefully we can get it figured out.

13 Messages

Il y a 6 m

Update: I wrote both an email and a certified letter to Simplisafe CTO Don Nelson asking for some communication to either explain or follow up with my question. The letter was delivered last Friday (Feb 11). 

As of today, I still have not gotten a response from anyone at Simplisafe HQ.

It is unconscionable that a security company would be so lackadaisical in their response to a legitimate security concern that has been escalated through the appropriate channels --- including a recommendation from their own technical support team that a customer contact their headquarters. 

The reasonable interpretation here is that Simplisafe does not see itself as a security provider. Sure, they manufacture devices that can be used for security, and yes, they manage an monitoring service. But so far, they have not acted responsively enough to ensure the security of their customers. 

(edited)

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

@QuarkENess​ please know that we absolutely take any and all concerns about vulnerability very seriously.

The best avenue for getting this figured out is right here through me, since I'm already working with our engineering team and keeping track of your case. I might also need to put you in touch with our lab, who handle high-level technical troubleshooting. That's who our Support agent may have been referring to, as well.

I see that you edited your original post, and I'm not sure what's new - but I don't recall previously reading that you were actually able to connect to the access point (without a password). That's extremely concerning and should not be possible at all.

Have you already tried turning off your Base Station completely? You can do that by unplugging the Base Station, twisting the bottom counter-clockwise to reveal the battery panel, and taking out one battery. If it really is the Base Station, that "ESP..." access point should disappear.

Incidentally, when you put the battery back in, that will also force a reboot. So if there was some sort of software issue, that might clear it out.

13 Messages

@davey_d​ I sent you a private message so that you can put me in touch with the correct people. I did not edit the original post recently (I may have edited it for typos earlier). The forum shows the post as being updated 2 days ago because I added my comment to the original post rather than responding to a comment.

Yes, of course we turned off the base station. This SSID had shown up sporadically over the last few months. It has not reappeared since we installed our new base station.

(On a complete different note: it is super annoying that technical support wasn't able to transfer over my devices and I had to re-add them all manually. I know this is possible because this is our 3rd base station and the last time they were able to port over the devices. Is this a limitation in the database or is it a training issue?)

Community Admin

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2.9K Messages

@QuarkENess​ got it! We'll get you in touch with our Specialists ASAP.

On the subject of Base Station replacements - the process of programming is automated, and the data is pulled either from your original order or the latest info from the server (as sent by your last Base Station). Normally there would still be settings you'd have to add back (namely the Master PIN - we reset that to make troubleshooting easier). But you shouldn't have had to start over.

13 Messages

Missed the call from the specialist. Called Simplisafe to follow up and they have not reached back out. Very frustrating that this is dragging out so long.

13 Messages

I believe the technical support person deleted our base station before adding the new one. She had no idea why "the devices sometimes transfer over and sometimes they don't". Sounds like that needs to be addressed in training.

2 Messages

Il y a 5 m

I had a similar experience after installing a new router that came with a great app that would show every device connected to my network.  After mapping and identifying every device I new of, there were several that remained unidentified that displayed IDs identical to the example you gave.  Some displayed as online, others as offline, and then at times, their status would change.

After about an hour of wracking my brain, I realized these device IDs were not coming from the Simplisafe base station or peripheral devices, but from the many Globe Electric wifi lightbulbs I have throughout my home.  As the power source to these bulbs were turned on and off from the wall switch, they would correspondingly cycle online and offline.  To my understanding, all wifi bulbs use espressif chips.  The device IDs, like the example you listed, contain the MAC address (an abbreviated version on my router app) of each bulb.  I was able to identify these by matching the MAC address from the SSID to the MAC address returned for each bulb by the Globe Electric app that controls their functions.  

Hope this helps.  

7 Messages

@GeorgeThomas​ very helpful information.  However in my case and QuarkEness above, it is the base station and keypad because (1) as soon as I unplugged the unit and removed the batteries the SSID goes away and then when I plug it back in, it reappears.  Done this several times to make sure.  Also have the app that finds hidden wifi networks and it's a no brainer.  

13 Messages

Il y a 5 m

We got a new base station and saw that this ESP_ wifi shows up during pairing of the Keypad and Base station. (That would have been useful information, Simplisafe). Still not clear why my keypad thought it needed to repair with our Base station, though.

7 Messages

Il y a 2 m

Me too.  Last couple of weeks it showed up.  Just like you said, it appears as an open unsecured network and then goes away whenever.  The sad reality about that is anyone else with some tech savvy can get on the simply safe network and change it as well as any other network that you have linked it to.  

7 Messages

Il y a 2 m

Funny thing is, for the longest time it just appeared as "hidden network" then after last update when it asked to re pair with base station it became ESP.  also, now the base station won't connect to the WiFi.  That's fine because like you mentioned, we found the security flaws and decided against it.  

7 Messages

Il y a 2 m

Bad thing is I wasted 120$ on the camera and without a Wi-Fi connection and a paid subscription, you can't get video/audio protection.

7 Messages

Il y a 2 m

Also, no live monitoring without wifi

Advocate

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417 Messages

Il y a 2 m

@lordhacky 

Bad thing is I wasted 120$ on the camera and without a Wi-Fi connection and a paid subscription, you can't get video/audio protection.

The requirements for the cameras clearly state that WiFi is required and do not state that a wired connection is available. It should not have been a surprise that you needed WiFi or that you needed a paid plan to save recordings. Or did I misunderstand what you were trying to convey?

7 Messages

@worthing​ I did have a Wi-Fi connection until after the last update.  That's when I was no longer able to connect.  I got the camera a year ago and everything worked fine.  Was able to live view my home remotely with my phone while away.  Now, for whatever reason I can't connect to Wi-Fi.  Yes, I am making sure it's a 2.4 ghtz channel (although it would be nice if they had 5 Ghtz too)