Many people are now choosing to have ‘smart homes.’ This means that all of their devices and appliances are connected to WiFi – such as their home security system, their TV, and much more. Laptops, tablets and smartphones are now commonplace in the modern household, with every member having at least one if not multiple devices. Some people even connect other appliances such as their fridge, kettle and thermostat to the internet by investing in a lot of smart home devices. In the past, many people imagined what a smart home would look like, and it seems that the future is here!
There are many reasons why the modern family is considering investing in a smart home. When you put all of your home on a digital system, many tasks become automated, helping your life become more efficient. For example, a smart fridge could let you know when you are low on food, sending you a text message to alert you to go shopping. A smart thermostat could automatically set the temperature of your home, so you can arrive home to the perfect temperature. If you have children or many other responsibilities, automating these tasks can be very useful for making your life much easier.
However, there can be some problems with a smart home. Although the designers and creators have taken steps to protect the devices through cybersecurity and encryption, there could still be vulnerabilities. If your home system is compromised by cybercriminals, not only could your personal and financial information be stolen – your home’s security could be compromised, allowing people to steal from your home. Taking steps to protect your smart home is imperative if you want to protect your family. Here are crucial steps you need to take to protect your home devices from cyber scams.
Only Choose Appliances You Need
One of the most important pieces of advice you need when it comes to protecting your home for cyber scams is to be pragmatic. Instead of rushing out to buy as many smart devices as you can carry, carefully consider what you actually need to make your home easier. Yes, security cameras and smart speakers may offer a form of protection and comfort, but it will also mean that you are being recorded 24/7. If this is hacked into, this could appear on the internet – make sure you’re being pragmatic about the appliances you buy for your home.
Keep Your WiFi Secure
The main vulnerability in which cyber hackers can get into your devices is through an unsecured wifi connection. A leading criminal lawyer in Melbourne found that most cyber scams were conducted via finding vulnerabilities in home wifi systems. Most home wifi systems aren’t secure, or use an easy to guess password such as ‘home’, allowing sophisticated cybercriminals to easily hack into your systems. Make sure that your home wifi system has a very strong password, and ensure that it is protected by the highest available security protocols.
Replace Outdated Routers
An unsecured wifi connection is easy to hack into, but outdated and old wifi systems are also easy to hack into. When you keep your devices updated, they will have better cybersecurity programmes implemented, allowing the device to be better protected against evolving viruses and cyber threats. Your wifi router is no different – an up to date wifi router will always be better protected than an older one. Make sure that you’re updating your wifi routers often, at least every couple of years. This will make it much easier for you to protect your home devices from cyber scams and hacking attempts.
Manage Your Account Passwords
As well as your wifi password, you should also protect the devices that are connected to it. This means that even if anyone hacks into your wifi connection, they will find it much more difficult to get into your devices and compromise your personal information and home security. Although it can be tempting to use the same password for everything in terms of convenience, this is terrible when it comes to cyber protection. Make sure that all of the smart appliances in your home have different passwords, to prevent the likelihood of all of your devices being compromised by a cyber hacker.
Enable Two Factor Authentication
Strong and varied passwords are crucial when it comes to protecting your home devices from cyber scams, but you can add extra protection to your smart home by adding two factor authentication to all of your devices. Two factor authentication would mean that as well as a password, anyone accessing your devices would need to provide a code, which would be sent to your mobile or email address whenever there is a login attempt. This means that even if cyber hackers guess your passwords, they won’t be able to access and control your smart home devices. This is essential if you want to protect your home.
Update Your Firmware
Firmware is another terminology for the low-level software which powers your devices and wifi router, and once you figure out how to access the firmware of your devices, you will better be able to protect your smart home. Finding bug fixes, updates and security patches allows you to have the finest cybersecurity protection for your home and all of its devices. You can even configure your devices to automatically update, so you can better protect your home and ensure that all of your cybersecurity is as up-to-date as possible.
Monitor Your Network
One of the best ways you can ensure that your smart home and its devices remain protected from cybercriminals is to manually monitor your home network. By installing programs that monitor your entire wifi network, you will be easily able to see if there’s a bad actor using your wifi system. Apps like these will show you every device connected to your home network, allowing you to easily find hackers and criminals trying to gain access to your smart home. Some of these apps can also reveal vulnerabilities within your network’s firewall, which would better help you to protect our home devices from cyber scams.
Invest In Your Protection
If there is anything that you should invest in, you should start to invest in the protection of your home smart devices. For example, investing in extra cyber security can bolster the defences of your home and make it less likely that your information and home security is compromised. Furthermore, investing in home cyber insurance could mitigate the amount of damage caused by a cyber scam. If you think your household has fallen victim to a cyber security scam, ensure to immediately contact wealth recovery attorneys and other cybersecurity organisations – they will help you to recover information or money lost from a sophisticated home cyber attack.