The Internet of Things (IoT) describes the technological trend of connecting traditionally non-digital items (“things” like: refrigerators, clothing, etc.) to the Internet so that you can monitor and control them remotely. Sounds convenient, right?

The below infographic depicts what a home of the future could look like.

the Internet of Things

With the IoT taking off, how can you protect yourself? When shopping for devices that are Internet-enabled, ask yourself if you truly need the device to be networked. With an estimated 50 Billion IoT devices online by 2020 (Cisco), only about 50% of them will be designed with security in mind. Only buy devices with built-in security features like usernames and passwords that you set up, have automated alerts and software firewalls that block access from the Internet back into your home. IoT devices will utilize your home Wi-Fi, so make sure you have enabled WPA2 Encryption and that your router and IoT operating systems are up to date. And of course, never give out your Wi-Fi password. For extra protection, have an IT security professional configure all of your Internet-enabled devices, including IoT, laptops, tablets and smartphones.