How Do You Secure a Connected Home?
The advent of technology has indeed been a revolution that changes the world completely with new devices being introduced on the market every day. With smartphones and advanced personal computer being a constant part of our lives, gadgets are entering into our households to make homes smarterand more efficient. With the introduction of smart home devices, all the household smart devices can be controlled automatically and be monitored over the internet.
But, the Internet is always a place for many botnets and cyber criminals who tend to attack connected devices in order to obtain private data from them. The so called Internet of things (IoT), which connects many devices such as smart TVs, security cameras, smart locks and even desktops over the internet, could make your connected home more vulnerable to cybercriminals.So it is high time you found an IoT security solution to safeguard the connected home from security attacks.
How vulnerable is the connected home?
Many move to the internet of things because it can automate things and can help home owners monitor all the householdconnected devices from anywhere. But it also should be noted that, if the owners are accessing data from some faraway place, then there is a very high chance that hackers can also link into the connected devices through the internet. Here are some ways that can make your connected home more vulnerable:
• Hackers can hack smart devices and access the data from these smart devices and can know about private information such as the presence of the owner in the home and the presence of any valuable items in the home.
• Some hackers attack smart devices through a ransomware attack. In such cases, they will demand a significant ransom to make the systems work again.
• With the over-confidence in smart devices, many people are sharing private data such as passwords or financial information or bank pins. But, if the hackers attack these devices and the devices are not protected, then all the information will be available to them.
Though all these are hypothetical scenarios and small examples, the reality is that, on average, one IoT device is attacked by cyber criminals every 2 minutes around the world, based on the Internet Security Threat Report-2017. Hence, it is very important to use a good IoT security solution to safeguard against any criminals.
Security for Smart Home devices
As discussed, it is high time that connected owners take care about the IoT security solutions to protect their devices from hackers. Bitdefender, known for its cyber security solutions, has come up with two products that can help smart home owners protect their smart devices from cyber attacks.
1. Bitdefender Home Scanner
This is a typical IoT scanner which helps home owners scan the entire home and provides them with a list of all devices that are connected across the home network. This helps home users to know all devices that are connected on the network and make inventory lists for further use. It can also help users to identify the devices that are vulnerable to any specific attacks and comes up with solutions to fix the vulnerabilities.
Interesting thing about this IoT scanner is, it comes free of charge and the app can be downloaded and installed on your Android or iOS mobile. To use this app, users have to create a My Bitdefender account, if the is no existing account, and install it on the device. Users have to deactivate any VPN before using the app in order to get the full benefit of the scan. (Though in our experience, it works fine even without switching the VPN off.)
Once all installation is done, this IoT scanner scans the network through the app. It connects to the home network with the permission of the user and starts scanning instantly. Normally every network router assigns a unique local IP address to all the connected devices and uses this to list the devices. It directly communicates with the network adapter to identify all local addresses and makes a list of all devices. Once the listing is done, it scans devices for any vulnerability and gives advice to solve the vulnerability.
2. Bitdefender Box
Bitdefender Box is IoT security solution product which helps home owners by shielding devices such as desktops, laptops, Smartphones, tablets and all other connected devices that are connected to internet from hackers, cyber criminals and malware. Powered by dual core version of ARM cortex A9 CPU, with 1 GB RAM and 4 GB internal storage, this small box like device can replace or run along with existing network router.
Bitdefender Box acts as sort of firewall to the devices that are connected to it. It protects devices by continuously watching inbound connection which keeps devices away from the devices. It also monitors the devices and looks for any unknown devices or any wrong behavior of network along with blocking any outgoing requests to malicious websites.
Though it is not free, the great feature of this Box is that, all the devices can be controlled and monitored through one single Bitdefender control App. Users should download this app from Android or iOS stores and login to the app with Bitdefender account (create if new customer). Make sure to disable existing wireless networks so that all the devices will be connected to the box.Users can choose different network settings from configurations and once it is done all the setup is done and Bitdefender Box is ready to be used.
Box can be managed using Bitdefender Central apps with which you can see the recognized and unknown devices that are connected to network. It detects any unusual activity over the network and any vulnerability on the network very fast due to its monitor over more networking layers and alerts the users. It watches over all incoming connections and new users require the permission of the owner. It comes with simple parental controls that can block websites or restrict the internet access by time during the day
So, finally it is very important to have IoT security solutions installed in home that have connected devices which are place for sensitive data. Using the above two products from the Bitdefender users can save their smart devices from the attack of any cyber criminals, hackers or any malwares.