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Securing Your Smart Life: Five Tips to Help You Protect Your Smart Home
Posted on Tuesday, February 27, 2024
Securing Your Smart Life: Five Tips to Help You Protect Your Smart Home

Feb. 27, 2024 - In an era when our coffee makers, thermostats, and even refrigerators have joined the digital age, the Internet of Things (IoT) has made life more convenient than ever. IoT devices are everywhere; and chances are that you  received at least one smart gadget as a present last Christmas.

However, with great convenience comes great responsibility – both in regards to your privacy and safety, as well as the safety of the internet itself. This blog post will walk you through the five most important steps you should take to strengthen your smart home security.

Understanding the Risks

Before diving into the solutions, it’s crucial to grasp the risks associated with unsecured IoT devices. For instance, a smart doorbell with a weak password can be a gateway for hackers to access your home network. Similarly, an unprotected smart thermostat could be exploited to gather personal information or even control your home’s heating and cooling systems.

Securing Your IoT Devices

Change Default Credentials during setup

The first step is to change any default usernames and passwords. For example, if you’ve just bought a new smart camera, make sure to set a strong, unique password that isn’t easily guessable. Most of these devices are available through the internet and attackers always attempt to log into them with default credentials or using large password dictionaries.

Regularly update device firmwareSomething that happens often is that the firmware that your device shipped with is already outdated by the time you set it up.

Manufacturers often release feature updates and security fixes. Ensure your IoT devices are set to update automatically or regularly check for updates. This is a preventative measure to keep your devices healthy and secure.

Secure your Wi-Fi network

An unsecured Wi-Fi network is a welcome sign for cyber intruders. Use strong Wi-Fi encryption (like WPA3), set a robust Wi-Fi password, and

consider setting up a separate network for your IoT devices. This way, even if one device is compromised, it won’t expose your primary devices, such as laptops and smartphones.

Disable unnecessary features

IoT devices often come with features that you might not use, but could pose security risks. For example, if you never use voice commands on your smart TV, consider disabling the microphone feature.

Keep an eye on your devices

Enhance your home security with a solution at the router level to manage, monitor and protect devices from network-level exploitation. NETGEAR Orbi and Nighthawk routers, secured by NETGEAR Armor powered by Bitdefender which identifies vulnerable devices, proactively blocks malicious traffic, and keeps your network secure. Cyber-security is everyone’s business. By taking these proactive measures, you can enjoy the convenience of your smart devices without compromising your privacy and security. Remember, in the world of IoT, staying informed and vigilant is the key to a safer, smarter home.