INTERNET OF THINGS: How to Improve Your Smarthome Security

Is the Internet of Things compromising your smarthome security?

(Photo Credit: Justin Kern, Flickr.com)

Welcome to the Internet of Things (IoT) where every home can be turned into a smarthome. For those of you unfamiliar with IoT, Wikipedia defines it as:

…the network of physical objects—devices, vehicles, buildings and other items—embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and network connectivity that enables these objects to collect and exchange data.

While the Internet of Things has certainly added levels of comfort and convenience that we only dreamed about a decade or more ago, it has also ushered in a new type of criminal. Specifically, the high tech sort who preys on people who enjoy the simplicities of smarthome gadgets, but aren’t too well versed in how they actually work or how vulnerable they are to being hacked. Today, we want to offer you a few simple points in protecting your smarthome as best you can.

Any home can be a smarthome by using the Internet of Things to connect devices.

(Photo Credit: Sunland Group, Flickr.com)

First, it’s important to realize that any devices using an Internet connection can be hacked. This means that WiFi connected devices like your home security alarm system, your smartlocks, baby monitors and surveillance cameras can all be intercepted and disabled by a criminal if you don’t take specific measures to protect your smarthome. Our recommendations to increase your home security and to stop hackers from remotely accessing your home include:

Secure Your Wireless Connection

Is your WiFi connection password protected? Can anyone park outside of your home and use your Internet connection? If you’re not using a password, your smarthome, your computer, your mobile devices are all wide open to be hacked. Change this by requiring that all devices connected to your Internet do so after authentication by password.

Make Passwords Difficult

You’ve heard this one before, but how many people actually do so? Despite warnings about passwords, so many people still use simple things like birthdates, family names and even the default passwords that a manufacturer programs. A difficult password is one that includes letters, numbers and special characters. It is one that does not use common words or names, but that mixes letters, numbers and characters in such a way as to not be easily remembered or recognized on sight. Also, please do NOT use the same password for multiple devices!

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