5 Emerging Cyber Security Threats
If you think that cyber security is just about computers and company servers, it is time to think again. Many of the most seemingly innocuous devices are actually computers in disguise, and the microchips they contain can put them at risk from hackers, thieves and others with ill intent.
From the television on your living room wall to the smartphone on your bedside table, there are plenty of weak spots in the average home, and the bad guys are ready to take advantage.
Here are five emerging cyber security threats that are sure to keep you up at night.
Home Security Systems
Home security systems are supposed to keep you safe, so it is doubly troubling when those systems turn on their owners. The fact that so many home security systems are wireless can make them vulnerable to hackers, and it is important to make sure your own system is locked down so that only you can use it.
It is important to read the instructions carefully when installing any home security system, whether wired or wireless. If the system includes a default password and login credentials, make sure they are changed before the security monitoring system is connected for the first time.
Few things are as frightening as a compromised baby monitor, but many parents have already lived out this nightmare. From strange sounds coming from the baby monitor to direct threats to the safety of the family, these hacks take many forms.
Many baby monitors now provide parents with the ability to check in on their kids remotely via Wi-Fi enabled smartphone apps, and those features can be very useful. Unfortunately, those Wi-Fi enabled features can also put the baby monitors, and the children they are supposed to protect, at risk.
Turning off those features when not in use, and locking down the monitors themselves, are basic steps parents can take to make sure their baby monitors do not turn into security risks.
Many modern devices, including some you may not know about, come with cameras built in. If you have a smart TV on your living room wall, the camera inside could be watching you while you watch your favourite shows. Smartphones and tablets also have embedded cameras, as do many other common household devices.
If you want a low–tech solution to potential spying, a simple cover, or piece of black tape, could be all you need. There are also settings you can change to turn off the cameras or lock them down.
Video doorbells can enhance the security of your home, but a hacked doorbell could also put you and your family at risk. These video doorbells let you see who is at the door, even when you are not at home, but they rely on Wi-Fi to do their jobs, and that can make them vulnerable to hackers, thieves and other bad actors.
There are steps you can take to protect yourself and your family, including changing default passwords and visiting the manufacturer’s website for patches and security updates. Make sure you know how the doorbell is supposed to work, and read the instructions carefully to make sure the device is properly secured.
Even if you do not have a security system installed at your home, you may have a security camera in the driveway or by the front door. These security cameras are affordable, easy to install and highly effective – even their presence could be enough to scare a would-be burglar away.
As with any such device, however, proper security is essential. Many popular security cameras come with default passwords, and failing to change those credentials could put you, and your home, at risk.
Cyber security is a real challenge in the modern wired world. Sometimes it seems like everything that can be connected is connected, from the refrigerator in your kitchen to the thermostat in your bedroom. If you want to take advantage of these modern conveniences, you need to take proactive steps to keep them secured.