How to secure your smart home devices

1. Don’t reuse the same password across multiple accounts or devices.

2. Use long, secure passwords ideally longer than 15 characters.

3. To make your passwords longer, consider using passphrases by grouping words that you’ll remember together.

4. If you struggle to remember passwords, consider a password manager. This generates long complex unique passwords for each account, but you only have to remember one password to unlock them.

5. Where offered, activate two-step authentication on critical accounts or devices. Two-step authentication means you can only access an account with a trusted device. If a login attempt is made on an unrecognised device, you must approve it on your trusted device. This means even if someone has your password they wouldn’t be able to login without your approval.

6. For internet connected cameras, ensure that if they come with a default login and password that you change these.

7. Be alert for phishing emails. Often hackers will send emails that appear to be from a company you have an account with, and ask you to open an attachment or follow a link to login to your account. These emails are designed to steal your login details, or to put a virus on your device. If you receive any email asking for your login details, or asking you to download an attachment, check the email address it comes from. Has the company used this email address to communicate with you before? Does it make sense for the company to be asking you to do this? Always err on the side of caution and — if still in doubt — call the company to check if the communication is genuine.