The Internet of Things (IoT) technology is rapidly gaining popularity both in the industry and households. With their intuitive designs, ease of use and a wide scale of applications, IoT devices can add a level of convenience both in a domestic or commercial setup. Today, many homes have smart internet connected gadgets like TVs, security cameras, gaming console, and other appliances, making it possible to control things remotely. However, this connectivity creates new opportunities for malicious attacks.
IoT attacks can be fatal and risky as hackers gain control of real-life objects, the physical devices. This can put human lives in serious danger, thus the need to secure your IoT devices in your smart home. Fortunately, there are various effective techniques and tools ranging from simple password protection to advanced mysql remote backup solutions to help you protect your interconnected devices. Here’s how you can protect all your IoT devices from cyber attackers.
- Physical Device Protection
IoT involves installations of multiple devices that can be physically accessed. This gives attackers the opportunity to tamper with and gain control of the physical device. This can happen in many different ways like connection via exposed ports (USB, Ethernet or SD slots), removing a part, device theft, and power interruption. Some of the measures of securing your devices against physical attacks include:
- Locking or sealing any exposed connectors or external ports.
- Installing your devices in secure locations out of normal reach.
- Use an authentication solution to ensure only authorized persons can access the device.
- Disconnect a device in the event it is stolen or lost.
- Securing Devices at the Router Level
Your router acts as the gateway to your private network. It is the hub that links all your IoT devices and enables them to function. You can use some of the following techniques:
- Replace your ISP router with one that offers additional security.
- Change the router’s default manufacturers name to a strange name to limit personal identifiers.
- Use multiple authentication layers on the router for the IoT device and for every device.
- Always use WPA2 encryption to secure wireless routers.
- Use a Secondary or a guest network for IoT devices
You can create a separate network only for the IoT devices to prevent access to your sensitive data in case of the network security breach. Separating your IoT devices from your main home or office network allows the devices to the internet while preventing access to mission-critical files. It also enables the use of device access management tools to control data access as well as block unauthorized access.
- Use Password Protection
Using passwords is the most basic way of protecting your devices within a network yet most of the people fail to do so. Here are some password protection tips:
- Change the default username and password for all devices.
- Set strong passwords that are hard for anyone to guess but easy for you to remember – Longer phrases containing numbers, special characters, lowercase, and uppercase letters are more secure.
- You may also use a password manager to simplify this step.
- Change your passwords regularly.
- Keep device firmware and software up to date
Device manufacturers keep improving their products to add more features or fix some flaws. Therefore, it is advisable to take any updates from the manufacturer seriously and install them to keep your device safe. In fact, the best practice is to proactively check the manufacturer’s official website, download and install any available updates.
- Disabling Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) Feature
UPnP feature enables IoT devices to discover and connect to other devices, eliminating the need to configure each device individually. However, this creates a freeway for attackers to penetrate your gadgets and network. To enhance safety, it is advisable to turn off UPnP feature and configure each device manually.
IoT devices make our lives easier by increase convenience in the way we do things either at home or office. However, the ease of connectivity for these gadgets exposes IoT devices to malicious threats, which can compromise their functionality and your safety. It is therefore to implement security measures to safeguard your IoT devices from hacking activities or any kind of malicious attack.