A Meaningful Smart Home has the potential of improving our health while decreasing the environmental footprint. However, when not approached correctly, connecting smart devices to the internet can make us and our house an easy target for hackers.
Hereafter we present you with the essential measures to adopt to keep your privacy and cybersecurity protected.
Use unique passwords.
In the physical world, we are used to having one key for each door that we need to open. We invite you to follow the same habit in the digital world.
Use different passwords for each service, shopping website, social platform, network and obviously, a smart home device that you use in your Meaningful Smart Home. Otherwise, a breach on any of these areas can provide automatic access to the rest.
Protect your network.
If you have not still done it, change the default password of your Wi-Fi router immediately. These default passwords can be found on the internet and not replacing them means exposing all your devices to hackers.
Additionally, it is recommended to create a separate Wi-Fi network just for the smart devices so that in case someone makes it into the network, your most sensitive information remains unaffected.
Update software when possible.
When software updates are available, do not wait and go through them. Software updates usually include patches to security holes and features to enhance user experience. If the device that you have adopted comes with an auto-update possibility, make sure to enable it.
Use multi-factor authentication.
When adopting new devices, go through their settings and security and privacy policies. It may exist the possibility to enable multi-factor authentication. In this way, the next time that someone tries to access the app by using the typical username and password, an additional authentication will be required. You will receive a notification with verification code or the person trying to access will need to scan his fingerprint.
Use trusted brands.
Rely on manufacturers and brands that are well known on the market. They have a reputation to maintain as well as the resources and capabilities of satisfying your privacy and security needs by providing transparency and ideally, end-to-end encryption, being you then the only person that has access to your data and information.
Prevent after-use breaches.
In the case of owning a product that is no longer supported by the brand, and to prevent unpatched security vulnerabilities, you may want to contact the customer service or to recycle the product directly.
On the other side, before getting rid of a device, either for recycling or reselling, reset it and make sure that all your information has been deleted.