Nowadays, data breaches and system hacks are quite common. Many companies across various industries, like DoorDash and Equifax, have had data breaches. This year, LinkedIn and Facebook user information was put up for sale by hackers.
Incidents like these remind us that the internet isn’t always a safe space. Yet, most of us use — even need — internet connection to work, go to school, or perform other daily tasks. The pros outweigh the cons, but there will always be privacy risks involved. So, what can you do to protect your personal information? And what happens if one of your home security systems is part of a breach? We’re here to help.
What does this mean for your home security system?
A good home security system can make all the difference in the world. It protects homes and makes people feel safer. But the type of security system people prefer has changed over time, with wireless home security systems more popular than ever before. Considering burglars know that disabling wired systems requires just a cut to the landline, the wireless preference makes sense.
However, wireless home security systems still come with some challenges. If we compare both types of systems, wired comes on top in protection against hacking. There have also been incidents where home security companies were targeted, most notably the Ring breach of 2019, showing how an oversight in security protocol can leave users open to attacks.
Prevention measures you can take against hacking
Here are some measures you can take to protect your access to your home security system. These might not protect you from data breaches stemming from your provider, but they can keep you safe from hacking attacks if you are targeted specifically.
- Always opt for two-factor authentication. Many home security providers already have that as a security protocol. If that’s not the case, enable it.
- Update your passwords. Your passwords should be complex and have no personally identifiable information. If it’s hard for you to remember, consider using a password manager.
- Check your logins. Keep an eye out for anything suspicious in your login history.
- Limit the number of devices you use to log in. If you see a strange login, contact your provider.
- Give everyone in your home a personal login. Make sure all family members don’t share the same login information if possible.
- Upgrade your firmware. One of the benefits of cloud-based home security systems is that they can fix any problem and roll out improvements fairly quickly. Make sure your system has the latest software updates.
- Secure your network. Activate WPA2-level encryption or higher. Consider using a VPN and hide your network for extra security.
What to do if your home security system was hacked?
There are various reasons your account can be hacked. Some of them you can combat with strong security measures to protect your home security system access. Other times, it just isn’t under your control.
The most worrying data breaches are the ones that come from provider issues because you can only monitor what’s happening. Many companies in the security space have suffered from data breaches. Recently, an ADT technician abused their power and hacked into video feeds. Earlier this year, Eufy claimed that a software bug caused around 700 users to access others’ camera feeds across different countries. In 2019, hackers accessed Ring users’ feeds and scared some victims using the two-way audio feature.
No matter the reason your account was hacked, here are some steps you can take to protect yourself and your family:
- Disconnect your system. If you suspect any foul play or notice something strange, such as your security camera’s LED lights turning on without you controlling them, shut down your system.
- Contact your home security provider. Reach out to them immediately for next steps.
- Change all your passwords. If a hacker has access, make sure you log in and change your passwords and any other security protocols that the hacker might have updated.
- Monitor your home security provider’s response to the incident. Your home security provider should be able to offer an explanation for what happened and next steps to ensure you’re protected going forward.
If your account was hacked because of an oversight or system issue your provider is facing, evaluate the following:
- Explanation of the problem given
- The fix and how long it took to implement
- Customer service response
- New protocols put in place to prevent similar incidents from happening
If the company can’t do any of this, consider looking for a new home security system provider. No provider is perfect, but that doesn’t excuse an inadequate response to a data breach. Your home security system should protect your home and make you and your family feel safe.