With various smart technologies transforming our homes, it’s easy to get carried away with all these new gadgets and completely ignore any security vulnerabilities they create. When you hook your whole home up to a Wi-Fi system, you make it possible to hack every part of it – which could be bad news if you have security devices linked in with them. It could also be a way for hackers to maliciously cause damage to your home or inflate your bills. Thankfully there are some simply security measures you can put in place to stop this from happening.
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Protect your router
If your router is not properly secured, hackers can easily gain access to it. In fact, talented hackers can easily use unlocked routers or those with default passwords for other cyber-attacks. If a hacker can guess your password or use a simple technique to unlock it, they will have access to all of the devices in your home. This is a serious risk to your security.
When using the internet, you should also think about the way that other internet users might try to target you. Use a VPN while browsing to protect your home network. This will help to guard against malicious software or hackers using your system against you. Be sure to follow normal best practices for web safety, too, such as never downloading anything unless you know the source. Set a good password for your router which is different to your normal online passwords.
If your devices have USB access or a port for a memory card, they might be a very simple hack for someone who has got inside your home. Imagine that this person sets off your security alarm upon entering your home, but within minutes has hacked and disabled it, making it seem like you have entered the password to disarm it. Try to keep any and all devices that have a management port into hard-to-reach areas. If they cannot be accessed easily, it will be more difficult to tamper with them.
Use the cloud
A company that sets up a cloud service for you, so long as it is done well, will have a much more secure network than anything you could set up for yourself. In most situations, you will be better off going with a cloud service, even though this entails storing your data outside of the home environment. Two-factor authentication should help to prevent unauthorized access.
When companies release updates for their software, they often do so to shore up weaknesses in their security that are often spotted by white hat hackers or in-house experts. This means that if you don’t have your software completely up to date, you could be vulnerable. Always update the latest with the patches as soon as they are available – and if possible, turn on automatic updates to automate this process.
Pick reputable brands
Setting up a smart home has its many advantages, but it tends to cost a lot, so users are often tempted to go with cheaper variations. From a security point of view, this isn’t a great idea. Reputable brands are the ones that know how to address security issues best, and they will also be more reliable when it comes to releasing updates.
When your home is a smart house, it’s important to protect it as much as possible. Don’t skip any steps, and be sure to keep it as secure as you would your bank account details or credit card – after all, there is plenty at risk if the hackers get in.
Written by Zoe Anderson – an employee at StudySelect. Zoe is keen on learning about new technology trends and is often found sharing her knowledge with other professionals online.