How to secure your smart home gadgets

Since the birth of IoT devices, we have seen the arrival of various home gadgets including doorbell cameras, data-logging sensors that can keep track of your health as well as smart kitchen appliances. The smart home gadgets are now extending to the most private areas of our homes. Though these smart devices are convenient for us, like operating your home while you’re far, they also bring various security concerns.

We’ve heard of Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks in the past, what most people don’t know is that hackers use the Internet of Things (IoT) to perform them. For instance, they use connected cameras, connected smart appliances in our homes and many more. This is why the security of your smart home should be a priority. Here are some of the practices you can use to ensure the security of your smart home gadgets:

Always update the software of your smart gadgets

Every smart gadget in your home runs on a certain software version; just like the software on your smartphone. It is always advisable to keep software versions of your appliances updated. A good percentage of manufacturers prefer releasing updates of their software whenever they need to fix a bug or a security patch. While most smart gadgets will often update themselves automatically, basic smart appliances will require you to check for updates manually.

Always change the default password of your new smart home devices

Most smart gadgets usually come with a default password that can be found on their documentation. The smartest thing to do is to change the password while observing the standard password practices. To gain access to your smart home, hackers will always try out the default passwords which are easy to crack. Using a unique password for each smart appliance ensures the security of other home devices, should one get compromised. Additionally, get yourself a good password managing tool to help store your passwords safe.

Only get gadgets from reputable brands

Most manufacturers of smart home gadgets often keep their devices’ data on the cloud. Meaning the consumers of these smart devices will depend on the ability of its manufacturer to maintain the security of their data online. The problem, however, comes in when a manufacturer stops offering support. This can happen if they have run out of business, or whether they lack enough resources to support the privacy of their devices’ data. This means that your smart gadgets will be left vulnerable to attacks.

Only stick with reputable manufacturers, this way you don’t have to worry about the security of your online data.

Connect only when necessary

Avoid connecting all your smart home devices all the time. Only connect the smart devices you need most, or need to use at that particular time. Hackers only rely on devices connected to a network, and if yours are, then you put your smart home to unnecessary risk.

Secure your smart home network using a VPN

All internet connected devices are prone to a whole lot of vulnerabilities and threats. This includes the ability to access them from wherever you are remote. If your network is compromised, your smart home will be at risk.

Securing your home network with a reputable VPN will ensure the privacy and security of your smart home gadgets. Since hackers tend to attack devices they can see online, a VPN service will help keep the presence of your smart home invisible through encryptions and IP masking. By keeping no logs, VPNs also ensure no one can keep track of your home activities.

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