Smart homes and internet-connected devices make our everyday lives easier through automation, creating reminders, and finding the answers to our questions. However, it does come with its own set of risks, including the breach of personal information.
To keep your smart home safe and smart, follow these three tips:
Do Your Research & Know What You Want
The first step in keeping your smart home safe and smart is to research your options. There are many smart devices on the market, and not all are created equal. For example, Amazon Alexa tends to have more compatible apps and features than Google Home. Research each brand’s pricing, privacy policies, data storage, and updates. Know what you want and do not want in a smart device, such as intelligent lighting and energy efficiency. This list can help you nail down the device that best meets your needs and wants.
Secure All Of Your Accounts & Devices
Securing your accounts is critical in keeping your smart home safe. Avoid simple passwords that include personal information like a pet’s name or “Password123”. A strong password should be at least eight characters long and a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols. For example, “IPh3wt$A”. Have trouble thinking of a strong password or remembering them? A secure password manager like Bitwarden stores your unique passwords in one place and generates strong passwords based on your criteria. These managers are accessed via a master password so remember to write it down, so you do not forget it! If you lose it, there is no recovery.
Know What Will Happen To Your Devices If You Choose To Sell
Selling your smart home comes with a set of decisions you must make. Will you take the devices with you, or will you leave them with the house? If they are selling with the house, you must erase all personal data from the devices and make a list of all devices in the home.
Remember that items staying with the home are considered Real Property (unless otherwise noted in the contract)— if it is affixed to or attached to the home such as custom automated window treatments.
Personal items are items you will take with you when you move, such as a Virtual Assistant.