Hi-tech homes could open doors for hackers

(Source: WNEM)

It may look normal, but this isn’t your typical home.

It’s a smart home, equipped with all types of special technology.

“It starts the coffee, it turns on the TV to a low volume, it starts to bring the lights up at different intervals,” Neal Check explained.

To make life a little easier while you’re at home, work, or even on vacation.

“When you look at the app, all of those live in one application. So here’s my security, my thermostats, my motorized shades, the ability to turn on different TV’s, play music, control lighting. It’s one application that allows that.”

Neal Check is the owner of Soundcheck in Southfield. His company specializes in making the average home, smart.

“So we take all of this through integration and we just make it easier, less complicated. We set it up in scenes and it all lives in one application.”

Those scenes, known as lifestyle scenes, are a reflection of your daily routine.

From arriving home, to dining, or even entertaining.

The technology helps make your life less complicated, and convenient, but with control in the palm of your hand comes the added bonus of safety.

“The security again, I can go in here. I can check my cameras so I can pull those up if I want to look at the individual cameras. Maybe want to check the status of my door locks and garage doors.”

And if you’re expecting visitors, “I could say, oh, my front door is locked. I have a friend coming over. I just send a command to the lock to tell it to unlock. You hear it unlocking and it shows you that it’s unlocked.”

You can also check the history, to see anyone that came and went.

There is also a special feature that makes it appear as if you’re home, even when you are thousands of miles away.

It’s called mock-upancy and it uses timers that mock your actual daily routine.

But with all this technology, are you making yourself vulnerable to hackers?

“We’ve seen what happens in the world, all over the world. There’s someone out there trying to figure out how to get in, and our manufacturers are always trying to be one step ahead of that curve,” Check explained.

Since all of the devices in smart homes like this live on a home network, Check explains that protecting your home starts with securing just that.

“Just make sure you have good equipment, good firewalls, good encryption, password protected. People don’t know what your passwords are.”

Because even giving out your WiFi password is like giving someone the key to your home, allowing them to walk right in, taking whatever information they want.

Check offers a couple pieces of advice. Constantly change your Wifi password, and set up a guest network, so that a password isn’t needed.

Copyright 2018 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


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