Smart home security systems are potentially vulnerable to hackers, especially if pre-emptive measures aren’t in place. This is because your CCTV cameras and intruder alarm will be connected to the same online network. If criminals manage to access this network, they can disable the alarm and enter the property unimpeded.
There are numerous ways to stay protected against hacking techniques. Here are some tips that home automation system owners should implement to protect their investment, as well as their property.
The first place to start is with your passwords. It should go without saying that obvious keywords, such as your name or “password”, are too risky to use but many people still do.
Instead, choose a unique, long password and enter a combination of numbers, symbols, lower and upper-case letters to thwart a rudimentary hacking attempt.
Also, don’t choose the same password as for your social media or online banking accounts. Knowing just one set of credentials provides an open goal for hackers.
You can habitually change the password yourself or purchase a password generator program that automatically produces strong, unique login credentials for all your online accounts.
Protecting the router is key as it provides the ‘digital doorway’ into the security network. Again, a strong password is needed, especially as the default code will be in place and likely known by skilled hackers.
Once logged into the router, criminals may also be able to hack into other devices in the same home network, notably your computer, tablet or smartphone. This offers instant access to sensitive information from a remote location, a cyber-attack that is very hard to trace.
To protect the router, perform system updates on a regular basis so the firmware stays capable of dealing with viruses and malware. You could also try hiding the router’s IP address so it becomes ‘invisible’ to potential hackers.
During the buying stage, look for home security systems with encrypted signals and tamper resistant features. Cyber criminals are far more likely to give up if their task is made harder with these protocols in place.
Limit the devices that can connect to the network, especially those from a public Wi-Fi hotspot. Only include equipment that needs to be in there, such as the CCTV cameras, burglar alarms, PC and smartphone.
Anti-virus software and firewalls can also be integrated into the system to reduce the threat of malware attacks and unauthorised logins. Using an online cloud service is preferable as their defence firewalls are often more advanced than a domestic user can provide.
Consumers should shop around for the best security system within their budget, looking for experienced brand names with a proven track record. The best way to do this is to approach a professional security company who know the best Smart Home suppliers to work with.
They’ll also be able to install the equipment on your behalf, protecting your investment and guaranteeing the network stays secure from hackers. Additionally, they’ll also be there to complete updates or perform maintenance tasks if required.
If you’d like to talk to us about protecting your security systems, get in touch now.
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