This holiday shopping season, the Echo Dot was the bestselling product on all of Amazon and countless Smart TVs were purchased. But even if you purchased/received the best Internet of Things (IoT) products on the market, you will need to take steps to make sure you aren’t creating unnecessary security vulnerabilities.
If you don’t password protect your devices and networks, you are an easy target for hackers. If your device or Wi-Fi router comes with a default password, change it. Read our post on best practices for creating passwords and don’t reuse them (no matter how strong the password). Consider using a password manager to help you keep track.
Consider setting up a separate network.
If your router supports it, consider connecting your IoT devices to one network (password-protected, of course) and using another for your personal devices (computers, phones, tablets, etc.). Also, keep track of the devices on your network.
Set app permissions and device settings.
IoT devices often have an associated app for you to download on your phone, tablet or computer. Look for privacy and security settings both within the app and on your device.
Keep your software up-to-date.
Installing software updates is critical to maintaining your connected devices’ security. If you don’t, you risk allowing security vulnerabilities to go unpatched. With many connected devices, you can update them through an associated app. With some, you may have to dig deeper. If you don’t know whether your device is up-to-date or supported, consider visiting the product website or getting in touch with the company. You should check periodically to make sure your devices are still being supported with updates and discontinue use when they are not.