With the inauguration of Joe Biden taking place today, the President-elect likely has bigger things on his mind than riding a bike, but for when that changes he might not have his trusted indoor trainer around. In an interview with Popular Mechanics, experts said his high-tech Peloton bike likely won’t be allowed into the White House for security reasons. Or, at least, not without the camera and microphone disabled.
With all its high tech features designed to make cycling more fun, the bike could pose a cybersecurity threat. “Because you’re connected to the internet, even though there are firewalls and intrusion detection software. Those things can be gotten around if you’re really good and skilled. Some could actually attack that Peloton bike, install malware, and reach out to other places in the White House,” explains Max Kilger, director of the data analytics program and associate professor at the University of Texas.
The Peloton bike uses the camera and microphone to allow you to interact with other indoor cyclist during a session. However, if Biden were to bring his bike, Secret Service will have to check it thoroughly and modify it to be better protected from hackers. “If you really want that Peloton bike to be secure, you yank out the camera, you yank out the microphone, and you yank out the networking equipment,” says Kilger. “And you basically have a boring bike then. You lose the shiny object and the attractiveness.”
According to The Verge, Biden wouldn’t be the first member of the White House to bring a Peloton bike. Michelle Obama reportedly used a modified version during her time in the White House.