The Internet of Things, 5 things you need to know!

Are the smart gadgets you’re using a security risk for your small business?

 

Whether it’s your fridge, your baby monitor or your lightbulbs — if they connect to the internet through you wifi they fall under the Internet of things or IoT. They might be embedded with sensors, come with software or feature a new technology but essentially they’re physical devices that are connected and can share information.

Whilst we love all the cool features that come with these IoT devices, and the opportunities these technologies create not enough is being said about the potential security harm that come with these devices. Your connected toothbrush could be the entry point for an attacker!

 

What we love about IoT devices

 Energy saving – with the IoT it creates the opportunity to save energy and your money through features such as controlling your heating from an app when your out of the house, managing your energy through carbonTrack which is linked to your smart appliances and provides reports on you useage.

Lifestyle – IOT can greatly benefit the way you live. From smart pillows that track your sleep (Zeeq Pillows), an egg timer connected to your phone (Quirky) to a pet tracking device that allows you to shoot treats from your phone remotely to your pet (Furbo)

Health – IOT can greatly contribute to your health and well being. Commonly fitbits are considered to be an IoT but less commonly known smart beds that monitor sleep, your heart beat and users movements. Smart Bras also have been developed to track heart beat and rhythm so users can know when to take a break or work harder. The technology is so advanced it can adapt to changes in the female body and also can monitor your cardiac and pulmonary conditions.

 

What we should be cautious about

Be Cyber Aware  – Although there are multiple benefits to IoT products cyber awareness needs to be observed. Reliable products with reliable apps should be used as well as good password management. Here are some tips that can be observed to ensure good password management practises. Not having the same password across accounts. The implementation of a password manager can help you manage multiple passwords for multiple accounts. We know it’s hard to remember your Ryanair login when you only use it once or twice a year!

GPS tracking – Just like your phone and laptop these devices have the ability to ping locations. There are multiple types of location types with different coverage, power consumption and useability. For some IoT devices GPS is needed, GPS according to some tech experts can be described as a match made in heaven. To turn off location settings you can usually find it on your phone in your privacy settings or on the app related to the device. There you can edit whether location settings are on or not.

Conclusion

Do you ever change the default passwords that come with your devices?  If you do one thing today, make it the changing of just one password on a device that’s connected to your wifi.

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