With the holidays behind us, it’s likely you or someone you know received a smart speaker or display, such as a Google Nest Hub, Amazon Echo or Facebook Portal. Maybe you even gifted one.
If you don’t have one, certainly you’ve seen the commercials. They are fun and convenient IOT gadgets that let you add items to your grocery list through voice command, instantly play music, cook a delicious meal and chat with Grandma on a video call.
But, they can also be a security risk. Surely you’ve heard the stories about these IOT devices getting hacked. People are being spied on, conversations are being recorded, thermostats are being adjusted… It’s scary. It’s sad to think that these fun gadgets can be a security risk or present privacy concerns.
So what steps can you take to proactively secure your new device? The best way is rather simple: create and maintain strong passwords for all your accounts. Use 2-factor authentication when available, and follow other best practices to secure your data. Several of these devices also offer a manual camera shutter, so you can easily disable the camera and control your privacy.
Understand what data is being collected by your apps and devices. Stay cautious, maintain strong passwords, but try to enjoy the benefits these devices provide.