Cybersecurity is a theme many of us are more aware of now than we would have been even just a few years ago, and the world of home automation is no exception. Data breaches and related concerns are more common and well-known today across any devices that are connected to the internet, and as more and more smart home elements fall under this designation, this is an important area to keep track of.
At AVI Systems, we’re happy to help with this and related themes for any of our home automation solutions, from home security systems through home audio, central vacuum and numerous other options in between. Why is cybersecurity important for any smart home elements, what are the risks of failure, and how can you approach this area comprehensively? This multi-part blog series will go over several basic themes to keep in mind.
Risks of Poor Cybersecurity
In a couple important ways, home automation security differs from traditional computers or other devices. Specifically, the connectivity of different smart home devices all into the same system makes multiple areas vulnerable if an attack takes place – if someone hacks into a single device within the system, they might be able to obtain Wi-Fi credentials and passwords from multiple different areas. There are also risks of hackers who are inside your smart home system learning information that will make it easier to burglarize your home.
Luckily, there are some simple ways to avoid these risks. We’ll go over these in our subsequent sections.
One of the top sources of cybersecurity risks for smart home systems is a router that’s either too old or does not have the proper protections in place. Routers can be infected by malware, which can compromise them and steal passwords. Consider basic Norton or other software to check your router periodically for malware; if your router is on the older side, consider upgrading it.
Within any part of your home automation system, passwords should be strong – and different from other parts of the system. Do not leave default passwords in place under any circumstances, and be sure to change passwords every six months or so. In addition, do not include common or familiar words, personal important dates or others that hackers might be able to connect to you.
While guests to any home will expect Wi-Fi available, there’s no rule saying you have to allow them to connect to your own network. Especially if your home has several smart elements you want to keep protected, set up a dedicated guest network. Some even have separate SSIDs within their home, allowing for one network that’s used for confidential areas like banking, then another that’s used for regular browsing.
For more on how to protect your smart home from cybersecurity risks, or to learn about any of our home automation solutions, speak to the staff at AVI Systems today.