Securing Your Home IoT Devices

What’s the deal with smart devices and this “Internet of Things” that everyone is raving about? Ignoring the cool-sounding buzzword, IoT devices are merely just computers, but ones where users don’t have much control in terms of the software that runs on them or whether they can be properly patched or even secured. Interestingly, despite possibilities of security risks, people simply can’t resist acquiring new technologies, from smart lightbulbs to security systems, cameras, and sense-activated thermostats, eager to experience and see how they can improve life. How do you subscribe to the Internet of Things without your devices being used against you? Here are some useful security tips:

  • Know exactly what’s connected. Knowing which devices are vulnerable to any attack is critical to security. An average home will have at least 5 connected devices, not counting smartphones, computers, and mobile devices. Note all the connected devices within the home, including media players, game consoles, and anything that might have a camera or a microphone, and verify what kind of information each of them has access to.
  • Password protect everything. Use a strong username and an even stronger password that includes more than just letters. Use numbers and symbols to elevate security and avoid using the same set of username and password for several accounts.
  • Don’t use unsecure internet connections. Avoid connecting to Wi-Fi networks that are not password protected. This will only make your device vulnerable to hacking.
  • Increase network security within the home by creating strong passwords for both your router and Wi-Fi network. Update them on a regular basis.

Secure your smartphone. Should you misplace or lose your smartphone, hackers might be able to access your personal information or connect to your other smart devices. You can use mobile security programs to back your data up using an online account and track the location of device. The same program can be used to remotely lock and wipe the contents of your phone.