Smart home technology went from fiction to reality faster than we expected. Nowadays, the market offers all sorts of devices you can use to make your home more connected and manageable.
There is a smart version of nearly every household appliance out there remote access security cameras to smart lights and fridges. But, the question is, are these smart devices secure? After all, your smart home might not be as safe as you think.
The Risk Involved With Smart Home Technology
Smart home devices hold a lot of personal data, including home address, the user’s birth date, and credentials, credit card info, and other financial data. This is what makes them a frequent target for hackers to exploit. The data they can pull from home devices can help hackers carry out phishing attacks and lure people into submitting their personal or financial information on fake websites.
Password exploitation is another common risk tied to smart home security. Third parties can easily get hold of weak passwords that control entire home systems. However, the worst security risk tied to smart home tech is physical break-ins. Experienced hackers can disable locked doors and alarms without making a trace. It can lead to serious security concerns.
How to Boost Smart Home Security
- Choose Smart Devices Carefully
If you are thinking about setting up a smart home system, think about security from the start. Choose devices carefully and stick to major brands that are known for quality and useful security features. While these devices will have a relatively higher price tag, the extra security will be worth it. Keep in mind that even the best brands cannot guarantee full protection at all times, so you need to consider these tips.
- Always Change Default Usernames
Once you set up a smart home device, you will most likely be given a random default username. Most users skip the setup procedure and don’t mind having a default username tied to their account. It makes their accounts more vulnerable to hackers and third parties. Users with default usernames are easy targets and will most likely be at risk of data exposure.
- Strengthen Your Passwords
Besides changing the default username into unrecognizable, you should also strengthen all passwords tied to the smart home system. The best way to deal with a bunch of passwords is to use a password manager and store them all in one secured place. Besides keeping your passwords safe and encrypted, a management tool will help you create new codes for extra security.
- Use Two Factor Authentication
The best smart home devices will have a two-factor authentication feature that allows you to set up a double login procedure. Using 2FA is a general security tip that should be followed on all devices, not only on the smart home ones. By adding an extra layer of protection, you will make it impossible for hackers to breach into your network and steal personal data. Keep in mind that not all devices will have 2FA enabled.
- Avoid Accessing Smart Devices Remotely via Public WiFi
What makes home devices so convenient is that you can access them from anywhere in the world, as long as you have WiFi. You might be tempted to check your security cameras while sitting in a coffee shop or waiting for a flight at the airport.
However, accessing home devices from unprotected networks can expose your data to unwanted risk. Once users connect to open networks, their data and IP addresses become visible and easily exploitable. If you were wondering, how can I hide my IP address, the best way to do so is to use a VPN to ensure extra security on public networks.
Keep Security in Mind
Cybersecurity threats come in many shapes and forms, one of them being through smart home systems. Like any WiFi-connected device, a smart security camera, doorbell, or light switch can be used as a backdoor for hackers to access a plethora of personal information.
As long as you stick to reputable brands and smart device companies, it should be easier to keep your data and home protected. Use two-factor authentication and better password management to avoid unwanted breaches. And don’t forget to connect to a VPN when accessing smart security cameras remotely.