Turning your home into a smart home is full of benefits. One of the biggest concerns people often have with having a smart home, is the fear of “Is it safe?”
The truth is smart home devices are equipped with several devices that are connected to the internet or intranet (internal network), to allow users remote management of different household appliances or systems. Smart homes are full of amazing new and constantly improving technology, and with any technology, there can always be threats from hackers. This by no means is a suggestion to stray away from smart home devices, rather an article filled with tips to make sure you are taking the proper steps to keep your smart home safe.
It is important to be aware about the exposures of your automation systems. These steps will help prevent hackers from gain access to the network that connects to your smart home.
USE PROTECTED DEVICES AND APPLIANCES ONLY
When it comes to smart home devices, you want to make sure you are buying brands that are reliable and trustworthy. Buying cheaper devices may save you money, but it can expose you to cyber threats, as these devices lack the proper protocols. You want to make sure the devices you are purchasing meet standards like ZigBee, Z-Wave or S2 (Security 2). Most well-known brands will satisfy these qualifications.
Using smart home appliances or devices like thermostats, lighting systems and CCTV present in your smart home are part of a network. These are the networks you want to make sure are properly protected. You can do your research prior to purchasing to make sure your smart home devices meet these security standards.
NEVER ACCESS YOUR SMART HOME NETWORK FROM A PUBLIC OR OPEN WIFI
In order for your smart home devices to operate, they need to be connected to a network. You do not want to connect them to public or open WIFI because these system entail weak security. It is important to connect them to a secure and private network that ideally is only used by you.
Public WIFI has very poor security protocols and this gives hackers the opportunity to sneak into your home network. Methods like man in the middle (MITM) enables hackers to set up fake public WIFI that allows them to intercept any transmission that takes place. They may be able to see the type of data that you are sending to or receiving from your smart home.
KEEP YOUR SMARTPHONE SECURED
Our smartphones seem to be our connection to everything, and our smart home devices are no exceptions. Our smart phones act as universal remotes for all of our home automation needs. It is important to make sure that your device is secure, not just for your smart home, but for all the other information someone would have access to. Ensure that it is always locked with passcode, touch ID or facial recognition.
If for some reason your device is ever lost or stolen you can always access it from “Find my iPhone” to lock your device. There are many ways to practice and ensure your security on your smart phone, it is important you always do so.
SMART HOMES NEED SMART PASSWORD MANAGEMENT
In a typical smart home, the appliances or devices are connected to the network via a WIFI router or hub; therefore protecting Wi-Fi is crucial. Set a strong password for your Wi-Fi network that is at least 12 characters long. It is important to make this password unique and not one that others could easily guess.
A lot of people name there networks in a way that is easily noticeable for example, “Bryan’s House,” in order to keep your smart home devices secure, it is suggested not to do this,
Before investing in a smart home it is important to understand how these devices operate. You want to make sure you are making your life easier, not harder. These steps well help ensure an easy and safe process when operating and building your smart home.