Keeping the Smart Home Network Secure
It’s possibly the least exciting part of owning a smart home – network security.
Nobody wants to think that their fabulous new television, refrigerator, or thermostat needs protection from possible hacker attacks. What would a hacker do if they could access the thermostat, anyway?
Well, quite a lot, actually.
A hacker getting into your internet-connected HVAC might not be after your identity or credit cards, but financial gain is not always a hacker’s motive, according to a recent Digital Trends article. A hacker’s reputation and credibility can be boosted by burning down a home through the kitchen appliances, flooding a basement after hacking into the HVAC system, or spoiling all your food by turning off your fridge. And then there’s the matter of hacking into an internet-connected garage door and gaining access to your home.
Because smart home devices can connect to other devices, and are assigned an Internet Protocol address, they are open to potential hacking. With more devices open, network-security basics become even more important to today’s smart home. The smart home owner can’t ignore the invisible windows into their home.
There’s a lot that can be done to secure the open avenues into a smart home – and an integrator can help.
It starts with the basics of securing the network with the Wi-Fi Protected Access II (WPA2) protocol and a strong password. The Wi-Fi network needs an obscure name, and the network should be firewalled. If your home’s router is a few years old, its security systems are probably outdated; replace it. Newer routers have guest network capacities so you can separate devices from each other and the main network; this comes in handy for appliances that only need to connect with the Internet and not other appliances. An integrator will help keep the system’s security up to date, and ensure that any new added devices are inventoried and properly secured.
Another security strategy is to create two separate Wi-Fi networks – one for devices that access the web for banking and shopping, and another network for smart devices and appliances.
For every network and all devices, make sure to keep strong, complex passwords – and regularly change them.
Smart homes can also benefit from a Unified Threat Management (UTM) appliance that manages the Internet gateway and antivirus protection, and oversees intrusion detection protection.
All mobile devices connected to smart home devices (like your phone, which can control your home’s temperature, locks, and cameras) should have security software.
An integrator can ensure your devices are protected with the latest security protocols. They can also regularly monitor your network security to make sure it’s up to the highest standards.
If you need to update the security of your smart home network, call us at Jackson Hole AV. We’re happy to help you attain the best protection for your home.
Matt Davis. How to Protect Your Fancy New ‘Connected Home’ From Savvy Hackers. Digital Trends. July 15 2013. https://www.digitaltrends.com/home/how-to-protect-your-fancy-new-connected-home-from-savvy-hackers/ Last accessed Feb 8 2018.
Fahmida Rashid. How to Secure Your (Easily Hackable) Smart Home. Tom’s Guide. Posted Oct 16 2017. https://www.tomsguide.com/us/secure-smart-home-how-to,news-19380.html Last accessed Feb 8 2018.
The Problems with Smart Home Security. Innovation and Tech Today. Posted April 15 2017. https://innotechtoday.com/home-security/ Last accessed Feb 8 2018.