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7ImportantSimple
StepstoProtectYour
HomeNetwork
getcujo.com SecuringConnectedHomes
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
Introduction
Why Security Matters
Every other day when you tur...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
1. Set Strong Passwords
Setting the right password for your co...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
2. Protect your router
Your router is arguably the most vulner...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
3. Use A Secure Browser
Mainstream browsers like Internet Expl...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
4. Anti Virus Is Not Enough
Society today is always connected ...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
5. Disconnect When Not In Use
Disconnect devices when not in u...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
Disconnecting your devices will not only help protect your sys...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
6. Public Internet Networks
You should be familiar with public...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
7. Stay Vigilant
Ultimately, the best way for you to protect y...
www.getCUJO.com	
   	
   Securing	
  Connected	
  Homes	
  
Conclusion
The security of your home computer depends greatly ...
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Internet of Things Security - 7 important but simple steps to protect your home network against cyber security threats - www.getCUJO.com

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Presented by www.getCUJO.com, this eBook shows 7 very simple steps to protect your home internet network and your connected home devices against cyber threats. With increasingly many connected devices such as wearables, watches, cameras, door locks, and even medical devices connected to the Internet, our personal identity and information security has never been more exposed. Learn how to protect your home with tips from www.getCUJO.com.

Published in: Technology

Internet of Things Security - 7 important but simple steps to protect your home network against cyber security threats - www.getCUJO.com

  1. 1. 7ImportantSimple StepstoProtectYour HomeNetwork getcujo.com SecuringConnectedHomes
  2. 2. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   Introduction Why Security Matters Every other day when you turn on the news, there is a story of a cyber-security breach. Today, the hackers are not just targeting corporations anymore. Countless individuals are hacked every day, some of them for their bank details, others for the sensitive information they may have on their computers, while some people are just hacked for the fun of it. As we become more reliant on technology and our computers, it becomes essential for us to secure our computers and all devices connected to the Internet, to avoid unauthorized access to our personal information. Hackers today are more sophisticated than ever before, and safeguarding your information has never been more important. If you want to guard your system against intruders, look no further than this seven- step guide to home internet security. Discover the different techniques hackers may use to access your system, and how you can protect yourself from such attacks.
  3. 3. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   1. Set Strong Passwords Setting the right password for your computer is the most basic security upgrade you can carry out to protect your system. Often times we use basic passwords like Admin or 1234. Such passwords may seem like a good idea to you because they are easy to remember, but they are also some of the most insecure. It takes mere milliseconds to hack these simple passwords. Hackers do not usually sit there trying to guess what your password is, they use automated brute force tools with advanced algorithms that crack these basic passwords. When choosing passwords, try using those that are at least seven characters long, have upper & lower case letters, and contain symbols and numbers. To help you remember the password, try to make a sentence or a phrase out of it. For example 1L0v3M!Cr05oft for “I love Microsoft” would be a good password to use. If you change your password to something like this, it would take a hacker more than a year to decrypt your new password. Remember not to reuse an old password, and try to minimize repeating the same password for different websites and devices. Shuffling around your usernames will also be helpful. In addition, avoid using passwords that involve dictionary words, names of family members, friends and pets. Sequential keyboard patterns such as qwerty or 123456789 should also be avoided. You can opt to download a password manager on the internet. These programs are designed to help you create a unique and complex password, and to help you manage these passwords once they have been created. This is done mainly to help reduce the chances of you forgetting what they are. Programs like SplashID and 1Password are just a couple of examples of these programs. Start with changing your computer and router passwords. These may not seem as vulnerable to hacking as your online accounts but they are by far the least secure. Change them frequently, at least four times a year. This will help to deter hackers from trying to access your information.
  4. 4. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   2. Protect your router Your router is arguably the most vulnerable connected device in your home. If hackers take over the router, they will collect information about you without alerting your anti-virus and anti-malware software. Luckily, safeguarding your router from unauthorized access is easy, and requires less work than you may think. The best way to protect your router is to update your router’s firmware (software) at least quarterly. This will ensure that you have all the latest security updates from the manufacturer, which should help deter hackers. You can also set a strong password for the admin console of your router. Additionally you can use a WPA2 network password (the password that you use to connect to your wireless network). Here’s a basic guide for Linksys routers (Google ‘change router WPA2 password’ for your own brand of routers or call your internet provider): http://www.linksys.com/us/support-article?articleNum=139152. Besides changing the passwords, you can also change the name of your network to something unique. Hackers usually avoid networks where the default name has been changed as it shows better security measures may have been put in place. Turning off SSID broadcasting is another way to protect your router. By turning off broadcasting, you make it virtually impossible for anyone to log on to your network without the network ID, as it will not show up on the normal lists. To log on to a hidden network requires an individual to know the network ID and password. Network monitoring software such as Fing can also help you secure your network. With this type of software, you will be able to see which other devices are logged on to your network, and control what devices can access the aforementioned network. Network monitoring software will also give you all the information you need to know about the devices around you, including IP addresses, MAC addresses and host names. If you have trouble with this step, email us at hi@getcujo.com and we will try to help.
  5. 5. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   3. Use A Secure Browser Mainstream browsers like Internet Explorer are most often targeted by hackers because of their popularity and reach. They are also prime targets due to the numerous plugins that many of these browsers use in an attempt to give you the best browsing experience. Secure browsers are browsers that have a wide range of security features, and are geared towards minimizing the loss of data, and deterring hackers from trying to break into your system. They also try to minimize the risk of you encountering malware or phishing sites by using URL filtering amongst a host of other features. These days, most browsers have the ability to let you alter the privacy settings on them. As much as you can tweak these settings to try and give yourself the most secure browsing experience possible, the popularity of some browsers is such that their security protocols are known by hackers and so they are easier to bypass. Getting a secure browser is important because your browser “knows” a lot about you, or rather, your online persona. Browsers can record information such as email addresses, bank account details and usernames and passwords for various websites. Enjoy a much more secure browsing experience with the Tor browser (see https://www.torproject.org). The Tor browser is a modified Mozilla Firefox ESR browser that is available for Windows, Linux and iOS. The Tor network routes internet traffic through a series of worldwide volunteer networks to conceal the location of users that use it. If you want to stick with mainstream browsers, we suggest using Chrome as the safest alternative.
  6. 6. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   4. Anti Virus Is Not Enough Society today is always connected to the internet, and we have become so used to it that we have forgotten some of the ways that it makes us vulnerable. Cases of cybercrime are on the increase every year, and protecting yourself from malware attacks, identity theft and bank fraud is becoming harder to do. Protecting your computer with only an antivirus program is simply not enough anymore as these programs will protect you only against the most basic of threats. Antivirus software was developed at a time when the internet was still growing, and connectivity was minimal. For this reason, it provides minimal protection against online activity. Antivirus software was designed to remove infections that slow performance, neutralize malicious programs, spam and unsafe downloads, and were not optimized to deal with online activity. Antivirus programs alone do not easily deal with phishing scams, direct hacks and other online dangers, leaving you vulnerable to these threats every time you log on to the internet. Cyber security organizations such as Symantec have even gone to the extent of saying that antivirus software is dead. They argue that malware written by today’s hackers is so advanced that many antivirus programs can take weeks, sometimes even months to detect and neutralize malware. Furthermore, what one antivirus program catches another may miss, while some of the programs completely miss the malware altogether, raising concerns about the inconsistency of these programs. One of the best solutions to this problem is to install free anti-malware software by Malwarebytes. This program scans and removes malware, including adware, spyware and rogue security software. Make sure to set it so that it runs and updates automatically multiple times a week. Other solutions include programs that provide you with complete 360° protection that incorporates not only antivirus solutions, but also antispyware, antimalware, browser and social media protection, and identity theft protection among other features. Remember that such software alone will not keep you safe and your connected devices such as wearables will remain vulnerable to cyber threats. Apply the other steps in this document to secure your internet of things connected device.
  7. 7. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   5. Disconnect When Not In Use Disconnect devices when not in use. This especially applies to anything that can be hacked, from smartphones and your computer to your router. Other household appliances that connect to the internet that people never think about, such as smart televisions and wireless printers should also be disconnected when not in use. Baby monitors and other home cameras are especially vulnerable to hackers as not only do they allow a hacker access to your network but they also can supply a hacker with a unique way to survey your property. Hackers can take over cameras and record videos or pictures when you least expect. They will even disable the light that indicates when the camera is on to fool you into thinking that the camera is off. Some hackers have even gone to the extent of switching webcams back ON when they have been switched off because the device that they are connected to is still connected to the internet. A 2013 investigation carried out by the BBC showed that cases of webcam hacking have gone up in the last few years. Childnet International, the UK charity that seeks to make the internet a safer place for children, has even recommended that children and teenagers not only disconnect their webcams, but also that they never leave their webcams in private places such as their bedrooms.
  8. 8. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   Disconnecting your devices will not only help protect your system, but it will also minimize the number of doors that hackers can use to access your system and steal your information. Having access to just one device on your network makes it easier for a hacker to gain access to all the other devices that are sharing the same network. Not only that, but it also becomes easier for them to access files stored on those devices, even if they are not in a shared folder. To disconnect them simply unplug them from their power or Internet source, and if they connect to WiFi, turn off their WiFi connectivity. You should never disconnect devices that provide physical home security such as your security cameras.
  9. 9. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   6. Public Internet Networks You should be familiar with public WiFi networks. They are in our favourite coffee shops, libraries, bars and even some forms of public transport. However, when speaking to cyber security experts about public networks, one piece of advice that you will hear from all of them is “Do not do anything sensitive on a public WiFi network. Do not do any bank transactions, do not check your email, and do not even log on to social media.” This advice should never be ignored because credit card security and privacy is most vulnerable when we connect to ‘guest’ networks in public spaces such as coffee shops. This vulnerability stems from the open nature of these WiFi networks. Public networks are usually not encrypted, as with many of them you do not need to put in a password as you would on your personal network. This allows anybody who is on the network to see what unencrypted WebPages you are visiting, and what you are typing into unencrypted web forms. It also allows people to view what encrypted pages you are viewing. It’s not just experienced hackers that have access to this information. With browser tools like Mozilla’s Firesheep, anybody has the capability to snoop on other people’s browsing sessions when they are on a public network. Programs like this also allow an individual to hijack your session, especially if they gain access to your cookies. More advanced browser tools such as wireshark allow the individual to capture and analyze traffic so they can weigh which session would be most profitable to hijack. If you have to use public WiFi, make sure that you access only encrypted WebPages. Browsers that use the HTTPS extension can also help you by redirecting you to encrypted sites when they are available. Going through a VPN network will also help to increase your privacy when on public networks. Any potential hackers trying to observe your session may be able to see that you are on a VPN, but they it will be a lot harder form them to see what you are doing on it. Remember, if you are using public WiFi networks, we strongly urge you not to enter credit card data or other private information when connected to such networks. Also, don’t log into your bank accounts from such networks.
  10. 10. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   7. Stay Vigilant Ultimately, the best way for you to protect your connected devices and your information from hackers and malicious programs is to stay vigilant. Make sure that you know everything that is going on with your computer, with your connected devices, and with your network. Remember that malicious programs, such as malware, adware and spyware can mimic other potentially harmless programs so make sure you obtain all your programs from trusted and respected sources. We live in an age where everything is one click away, and as we become more reliant on the internet, better security measures are coming in to play. However, those increased safety measures only serve to drive the creativity of the hackers that are bent on cracking them. As much as your antivirus is configured to alert you on the dangers of certain downloads, hackers are finding various ways to bypass those protocols that detect malicious code. You may think that what you are downloading is a harmless mp3 file from a music website, yet that file may have code embedded in it that allows a hacker to access your files and steal information from your computer. There are also many downloads on the internet that “require” you to download some form of toolbar or download manager. Though some of these may be legitimate, there are a large number of them that are used to mask more sinister code, which open up your system to cyber attacks. When checking your email and other messages, try never to click on a link, especially if you do not know the sender. Some of those links will take you to phishing sites which may look very similar to the site that you want to access but are ultimately just websites set up to steal your personal login information. When asked to click on a familiar looking link in a message, it is always better to manually type in the link rather than follow the hyperlink to reduce the chances of you stumbling on to a phishing site.
  11. 11. www.getCUJO.com     Securing  Connected  Homes   Conclusion The security of your home computer depends greatly on how it is used and for what purposes. Many people do not think twice about the way they use the internet, and would rather trust in the fact that most, if not all, of the websites they are visiting are safe and secure and most of all private. The safety of your files depends on who has access to them. If you leave all the “doors” to your digital world open then inevitably at one point or another somebody is going to access them. By leaving your router on when you are not using it, or by not disconnecting devices that are not in use from the network, you leave yourself vulnerable to cyber attacks that could cripple your whole network. By applying our suggestions above, you will take a strong step towards keeping your home and your information secure. Please be sure to check our site at www.getcujo.com and our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/getCUJO often for more security tips.

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