Homework for the “smart” home

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Smart technology makes it possible to connect devices — from pet feeders to home surveillance systems — to the Internet and control them from nearly anywhere. The technology is evolving rapidly, promising even greater convenience, security, and comfort in the future.

But the pace at which the technology is changing also poses possible pitfalls. For example, consumers who paid $299 for a “Smart Home Hub” that Revolv began selling in 2013 to operate locks, sound systems, and other devices learned in February that Nest Labs, which bought Revolv, was stopping its support for the device, making it useless.

Nest offered full refunds to Hub owners — a fact that contributed to the FTC’s decision to close its investigation of Nest’s action — but the incident is a reminder to ask some questions when you shop for smart devices. Learn how a device works and what support the manufacturer will provide. Pay close attention to the product’s security features because an online security breach involving one device could expose your entire home network.

Here are more tips to help you smarten your home:

  • Find out if the product will work with connected devices you already have, and with other companies’ devices.
  • Ask how you’ll get security and other product updates.
  • Take time during your initial set-up to familiarize yourself with any dashboards and widgets that you’ll use to control the device remotely.
  • Don’t just accept out-of-the-box default settings. Turn on secure features and re-evaluate only after you’re familiar with the device.
  • Consider if you’ll be able to keep using the device if the manufacturer stops providing updates and other support.

Looking for more tips on keeping your devices secure? Sign up for email updates from the FTC. Choose “Consumer Updates: Privacy, Identity & Online Security.”

Comments

Thanks you

Vickie L.F.Shaw would you happen to have a security system to open an apartment door what's a mote control for a handicapped person and maybe more

I'm an elderly/health challenged female who can't find an internet service to do my on line shopping and other things without being ripped off for data charges and installation charges. I was with a "name brand " company until yesterday who kept charging me for outrages amts of data that I was not using ( I do not have wifi and was told I did not need it because I did not do hamming or watch movies). I was charged for up to 10 GB in less than a mo to do simple simple surfing.
It took me mo's to get out of contract that I could no longer use or afford on my SS. I'm desperate for help!!

So I was having similar problems no matter what security measures I used it was still occurring then I began noticing text messages on my cell phone, even though I never left it behind, charges on my federal benefits debit card, messages on my face book account I had not sent. I recently was forced by this person to move. I have a roommate now, I sleep with my bedroom door locked yet this person is still getting in and not through the window or door. We found what appeared as a root under the shallow dirt of the yard yet it lead to nothing other than under our home.?????

1700Thank you I learned 2 important facts about credit reports & it's obviously been kept secret by many banks. I pay a higher bank service charge to get a credit balance report once a quarter. Thanks again for the information & for keeping a Watch Out on what is really going on in our Country. God Help Us!!!

Thank You. That which is done in the background shall be brought to light and caught when we are made aware

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