Gosh, sometimes being human is just plain hard!
Flicking a switch to turn on a light.
Remembering how much water to drink.
Wondering if your hair has been brushed with the correct force.
What about working out where your cows are?
The “Internet of Things” or IoT connects so called “Smart Devices” to the internet. Whilst there’s no doubt some good use cases to having some of your gadgets internet-connected, here’s our top 10 list of absolute shockers.
10 stupid IoT devices that we just didn’t need
- We all hate drinking water and spelling words correctly is a major drag. I mean, it’s the 21st century – shouldn’t we have a pill for that or something? Drinking when you’re thirsty is so hard it would appear. Enter the smart water bottle that will buzz and glow to remind you to drink.
Kérastase Hair Coach
- YES! Finally a hair brush that will measure the speed and orientation of your brush strokes, because up until now you’ve been doing it like a caveman.
- Garage doors have been annoying mankind since the dawn of time. “What? I need to click this button to open it??”. No longer do you need to suffer this pain of a convenient button. Now you can open your garage door whenever you like from your much-more-convenient smartphone, with Garageio.
- Turning on a pod machine is tough enough, this nifty little gadget will tell you if you’ve run out of pods and most importantly, if you load a pod into the machine you can use your smartphone to make it go – rather than pressing the button on the top of the machine.
- We all hate having to shut our plantation shutters. To ease the horrific burden of moving your arms and legs, get onto this stupid kickstarter idea.
- Make burnt toast a thing of the past with this Bluetooth smart toaster from the geniuses at Griffin. At $132 it’s probably not great value for money given that your regular K-Mart variety toaster for $15 will work most of the time.
- But wait – there’s more stupidity from Griffin! They’ve also created a connected mirror that will display notifications from your phone, details about the weather and of course updates from your Griffin toaster… actually this device might actually be pretty cool, except for its $1390 price tag. Might as well just look out the window.
- Kids really are simple. If given nothing else they’ll happily play in mud for hours. So why does their new teddy bear need to be connected to the net?? And just wait until recordings of your kids conversations get leaked… oh wait, they already have.
- And rounding off this list is the dumbest of all connected devices. These connected flipflops don’t give you any health data, such as steps or gait… they send the user discount shopping deals.
PROTECTING YOUR IOT DEVICES FROM BAD GUYS AND STUPIDITY
People love the idea of having all their devices connected – it’s fun, techy and some may even think it adds some convenience to their otherwise difficult lives. But as with any introduction of convenience it doesn’t mean you should forego the security required for these devices.
Hackers are getting into smart doorbells and teddy bears for monetary gain – they’re doing it because they can. Whilst scenes from sci-fi films are still a way off, digital scumbags can always find a way to extort you of your money.
Here’s some simple steps to help protect your IoT device from unwanted intrusion:
Change Default Passwords
Most IoT devices come with a default username and password… and most of the time it’s Admin & Admin. Failing to change this makes it a lot easier for a hacker to gain access and steal whatever data you might have. During setup and installation, choose a strong password that’s unique to that particular device.
Keep an Eye Out
Suspicious activity is, well, suspicious. If, say, your garage door keeps opening and closing, it could be a hacker testing things out. Or if your smart toaster keeps burning everything it could just be a jerk hacker. If this happens, change your password. And if it persists, contact the manufacturer.
Updates for apps and devices usually contain necessary security upgrades. Even if the device is fresh off the assembly line, there could be an update waiting for you upon installation.
When installing a new app, look at the permissions it’s requested. Does the Uber app really need access to your microphone? You can sometimes be selective when granting an app permissions. Don’t just click “Allow” and trust everything you install. If you’re unsure of why an app might need access to a particular component, do a little research to make sure you keep your data secure.
Still unsure? Then contact us for some help.