This week Facebook had a data breach affecting 50+ million users…Then there was a CBC Marketplace investigation that exposed how smart home devices are not only creating convenience and smart homes for their owners but are also engendering huge security vulnerabilities for those same owners. Think about how convenient it is to control the thermostat in your home by your smartphone. Or unlock the doors before you get out of the car. Don’t trust the nanny or want to check on what the dogs are doing while you are away? Those examples are not science fiction and just as easily hacked as they are accessed by your smartphone. Another example:
“A website called Insecam, thought to be hosted in Russia, live streams footage from thousands of cameras still using factory-default passwords, often without the knowledge of the cameras’ owners.
The site grabbed headlines last year when it was found to be streaming detailed images of students inside a school in Nova Scotia, prompting an investigation from the province’s privacy commissioner.”
After reading the next example I contemplated getting rid of the Internet in my home:
“The family uses a Wink Connected Home Hub, allowing them to control their lights and front door with a smartphone app.[..] The ethical hackers got the password…And it gave the hackers the ability to send voice commands to the couple’s Amazon Echo, where they could potentially place Amazon orders using Kenwood’s stored credit card information”
Just for “fun”, I encourage you, dear readers, to have a closer look at that CBC article and see if you recognize any potential pitfalls that may affect you. But also, use common sense – you do not need to secure your Facebook account if you don’t put anything private onto it. And don’t use the same password across all your online accounts. Yes, I know it’s a pain, but think about it – once the bad guys get your password they have access to everything! Enable two-step authentication on your accounts if it is available. Read those terms and conditions when you sign up to various sites as it will help with your insomnia and shock the hell out of you…And use common sense!