by Ted Saul, Senior Staff Writer
As the “Internet of Things” continues to grow so do the number of opportunities for those looking to take advantage of security gaps in technology. The internet of things means that any device that can be assigned an internet address will be manageable from a computer, phone or tablet. This includes equipment used for businesses along with many home appliances. At the local hardware store today many remote control led devices can be found including, thermostats, garage doors openers, irrigation systems, entry doors and security cameras. To protect your business and home, safety measures must be taken seriously ensuring web controlled devices are locked down. Without doing so, the same control you have or video feed you are viewing will be available for anyone. It’s like an automobile without an ignition key where someone simply pushes the start button and drives away.
How big is this security problem? A website talked about in the media recently was created to expose the risks. They had found over 11,000 unsecured cameras in the United States alone. To highlight the risk random pictures of rooms and homes are posted. Two mistakes are common when it comes to these devices. First no password is set on the device. Secondly, the default password from out of the package and has not been changed. Scrupulous individuals keep track of passwords shipped by manufacturer and device. Figure your device is on their list.
Four simple steps can great reduce your vulnerability:
1. If it hasn’t been done, set the password on all managed devices. If your password is still set to the default or you’re not sure, change it.
2. Secure your router. Within your home or business, internet traffic flows through your router and can be provide risk. Hide the SSID from the public and be sure your password is set appropriately.
3. Take care from where you connect to your home or business devices. Unsecured internet access at the local coffee shop is a high risk especially if you are sending non-encrypted information.
4. Be careful of apps loaded on your device. They in themselves can present a risk and may serve as Trojans hiding programs that capture information.
As with any computer security, a few minutes of proactive work can save a great deal of pain. So close your curtains and lock your technology doors.
Ted Saul is a business coach that assists with Business Plans and Project Management. He holds a master certificate in project management and has earned his MBA from Regis University. Ted can be reached on LinkedIn, TedS787 on Twitter or emailing Ted@tsaul.com