Do you ever get that eerie feeling like somebody is watching your every move? You might not be imagining it, especially in the age of smart devices. The rise of the Internet of Things allowed numerous gadgets and items to track you and your habits. They collect the data and can make chillingly accurate predictions about you.
We no longer have smart households only – there are whole smart cities out there! With that in mind, it is clear that every user should pay more attention to their privacy online. So what can you do to feel safer while surrounded by technology that is all about the information? Here are a couple of quick ideas!
Smart devices can collect various data on the users. For instance, having an assistant automatically places a microphone in your home. The same goes for smart security cameras. Then there are smart TVs that keep track of our viewing habits and much more.
Overall, these devices can record a lot about us and our daily lives. However, manufacturers often claim they are all about privacy and that light surveillance improves the algorithms and suggestions.
While you can shut down devices like assistants and smart TVs, that is not a permanent solution. Users should disconnect them from the network for good. Unfortunately, these gadgets are not as functional as they should be without access to the internet.
Users need to be prepared to make privacy compromises and decide which devices they are comfortable with. Of course, you can go a step further and limit the permissions. There are ways to reap the benefits of technological advances while protecting your personal space.
The first thing you should focus on is protecting your entire network from a possible cyber attack. Connecting multiple smart devices to the same network can make your home the perfect target for cybercriminals. For instance, a simple thing like a smart lightbulb can be the gateway for hackers if they find a flaw. Therefore, enabling the VPN on a router is a must.
VPN on a router comes with numerous useful features. It will not only keep your smart devices safe, but you may also change your IP address. It can come in handy when you want more fresh viewing content from Netflix and Amazon Prime, namely shows and movies you can’t stream at your location.
As you already know, smart assistants are always switched on and are listening to you. If you sometimes feel uncomfortable around this tiny speaker, you are not the only one. 41% of users have confirmed they are concerned about their privacy, but they still use an assistant. The manufacturers like Amazon and Google say that their speakers listen to you to give better suggestions.
If you are not on board with that idea, you could limit the information sent to them. For instance, you can turn off the data collection in the app settings. Furthermore, users may delete their voice searches as soon as they make them. Ask your assistant to erase it right away, and it won’t show up anywhere.
Besides securing your internet connection with a VPN for a router, you need to think about each device individually. Ensuring they are running the latest software is the key to preventing cybercriminals from stealing your personal information. Considering how much data your smart devices collect, they will have a lot to work on.
Software is not perfect, and hackers can detect flaws if they are persistent enough. Luckily, manufacturers are constantly trying to stay one step ahead of them. That is why software updates are so important, especially for smart homes. Users need to do their part too. Enable automatic updates if you can and keep up with the latest patches.