Smart home devices make our daily lives simpler, but they are also vulnerable to hacking attacks, and while it may seem ridiculous to think that a stranger would want access to your refrigerator or thermostat, truth is these home devices could be hacked and used to steal important confidential information, spy on or even blackmail you.
Computers are no longer the only devices vulnerable to cyber attacks, especially with the internet taking over our lives, one can never take too much precaution. We’ll not only detail the smart home devices most vulnerable to hackers, but will also provide a few tips on how to better protect your privacy.
What Are The Most Vulnerable Home Devices?
Smart TVs not only carry the information regarding your favorite films and tv shows, but because they have access to the internet and are connected to Netflix, HBO Go and other applications containing your personal information and payment details, they can be a target for hackers.
Yes, it seems ludicrous to think that someone might want access to your smart refrigerator as it apparently holds no important data, but the reason a hacker could be interested in it is that it is connected to the same Wi-Fi network as the rest of your devices, allowing them to use the fridge as a gateway to other gadgets holding sensitive information.
Since printers are usually connected to your computer, they are one of the most vulnerable pieces of your smart home because they provide access to important documents that users may need to print or scan.
Wi-Fi Enabled Security Cameras
One of the most common home devices that could be hacked are security cameras, as they can be used to obtain valuable information and violate your privacy by listening and watching your every move. As cybercriminals could gain access to them and use them to fully disable your security system, you should pay extra attention to the way you protect them from vulnerabilities.
There are documented cases in which hackers have accessed a home’s thermostat and used it to control the environment and ask for ransom creating unbearable conditions, such as turning off the heat in winter or raising the temperatures high on summers.
By gaining access to smart home devices, hackers can not only terrify and blackmail you or steal your information, but also gain power for DDos attacks in which particular websites and networks are left vulnerable due to smart gadgets.
What You Can Do To Prevent Hacking
Now that you’re well aware of which home devices could be hacked, it’s time to use that information to protect yourself by regularly updating them and checking their default privacy and security settings, adjusting them according to your precise needs.
Investing in a secure router with built-in protection, or setting up a second network for IoT devices that don’t share any access to other gadgets and data can be extra precautions to be taken. However, the most simple and effective one would be to simply change your passwords to very strong ones and avoid using the same ones for multiple accounts and appliances.
While it may seem impossible to remember so many different passwords, tools such as LastPass and Cyclonis Password Manager allow you to store all of them under one secure app, keeping them safe from outsider eyes.
Don’t leave it until the last moment and begin implementing these security tips now, as more often than not you won’t realize if any of your devices have been hacked until it’s too late.