Protecting Your Smart Home from Hackers

A person holding a cell phone with a smart home phone app displaying control settings such as toggling security devices, temperature, and lighting with a hardwood floor backdrop.Smart home technology has been growing in popularity over the past decade. From virtual home assistance like Amazon Echo to motion-capture security cameras like Ring, homeowners are achieving better security and convenience for themselves and their loved ones. However, despite all of their benefits, smart home technology also comes with a potential for personal information or property theft. Since they operate through connection with your internet, these devices are at risk of cyberattacks. Fortunately, protecting your smart home from hackers isn’t as difficult as you may think.

How Can Smart Home Devices Be Hacked?

A smart home is vulnerable because it’s connected to the internet. Anything connected to the internet – often known as the Internet of Things (IoT) – can potentially be hacked, accessed, and controlled remotely by third parties. Oftentimes, cyber-attacks are successful when your smart devices don’t have built-in security or they have security features that the owner needs to enable. Since these devices can control everything from your online purchases to your baby monitor, it’s important you review the security instructions when purchasing smart tech. Hackers can gain access to your IoT due to outdated or inadequate security protocols.

Determine Your Smart Home’s Vulnerabilities

Protecting your smart home technology from hackers begins with identifying which devices can connect to the internet and whether there is a need for them to do so. The tricky thing about smart home technology is that they can pass vulnerabilities on to one another. Hacking into a smart speaker may seem pointless, but when it’s connected to your Wi-Fi, which is in turn connected to your video doorbell, smart thermostat, or smart TV, all those devices are now potentially susceptible to a cyber-attack. To protect this smart device ecosystem, you need to have a plan.

Tips to Protect Your Smart Home from Hackers

With your personal information and property at risk, it’s important to enact a few simple steps to increase the security of your smart home. Here are a few tips to better protect you, your family, and your IoT:

  • Purchase Reputable Tech: Smart home tech is expensive, but cutting corners may leave you with a device that has few security measures. You want to invest in a brand that promises regular software and security updates.
  • Protect Your Wi-Fi: Use a very strong password for your Wi-Fi network. You should also enable WPA2 encryption and a firewall, which you can find located in your router settings. You can also call your router manufacturer or service provider to discover if they offer security updates.
  • Use Unique Passwords: Your Wi-Fi isn’t the only thing that needs a strong password. If you use a password to access any of your devices, make sure each one is unique. You should also enable multi-factor identification for additional protection.
  • Toggle Security Settings: Access the settings of your smart device and ensure the highest security options are enabled. You can also disable remote access so no one outside your home can gain access to your devices.

With adequate security in place, you can take advantage of the convenience these devices offer without fear of hackers. However, with technology risks constantly evolving, it’s always good to keep up to date on all the latest in security news and updates.

Protecting your smart home from hackers will give you peace of mind to update your home with the latest tech. However, regardless of how many steps you take, hackers may still find a way to bypass your security. In the event a hacker disables your smart home security or locks, your homeowners insurance can step in to cover your stolen belongings. At TJ Woods Insurance, our agent will match you with the right homeowners insurance to ensure you receive the utmost coverage for a great price. Contact us today if you need to upgrade your insurance to match your technology-driven household.