Smart home technology and the internet of things (IoT): risks and rewards to consider

Google assistant at your home

Many Americans are embracing Smart Home technology, and new devices (“Things”) are continuously hitting the market.

Many of these devices can help to stand guard against fires, plumbing floods, and other emergencies providing “safety and security” to protect your family and your home.

Others have revolutionized how consumers control their home by providing practical and functional use like control of lighting, climate, entertainment systems, and appliances.

And of course, we all love our Amazon Echo devices and asking Alexa to take care of small tasks and answer questions or the Google home device also to assist us at home.

But smart home technology has been around for a long time even before the Internet.

For example, a thermostat in one’s home has existed for a long time. This is a smart device, but what has changed is the ability to access and control the thermostat is now available remotely via your smartphone, tablet, and computer.

Appliances like the dishwasher, clothes washer and have had some smart elements to them for many years in that they know when to turn themselves off. Other examples include remote controls for our entertainment systems and to open and close our garage doors. Even ovens have been programmable for a long time.

And, don’t forget timed switches which allow us to have our lights turn on and off when we are on vacation. These are also popular attachments to our coffee makers.

We all like things that make our lives easier, and smart home Technology certainly delivers.


I would encourage you all to read this New York Times Article: October 10, 2018

 STATE OF THE ART A Future Where Everything Becomes a Computer Is as Creepy as You Feared

Some quotes from the article which should give us all pause:

“The trouble, though, is that business models for these devices don’t often allow for the kind of continuing security maintenance that we are used to with more traditional computing devices. Apple has an incentive to keep writing security updates to keep your iPhone secure; it does so because iPhones sell for a lot of money, and Apple’s brand depends on keeping you safe from digital terrors.

But manufacturers of low-margin home appliances have little such expertise, and less incentive. That’s why the internet of things has so far been synonymous with terrible security‐why the F.B.I. had to warn parents last year about the dangers of “smart toys,” and why Dan Coats, the director of national intelligence, has identified smart devices as a growing threat to national security.”

There are many more articles out on the Internet regarding this potential problem.

Consider the threats that are created when you connect parts of your home to the Internet and the software is not secure or someone somehow compromises your password.

While at work someone:

  • Accesses your thermostat and turn the heat off and your water pipes freeze.
  • Turns on your stovetop causing a fire.
  • Sets off your burglar or fire alarm causing the police/fire department to visit your home. Some municipalities will actually charge a fee for a false alarm.

If you have an Amazon Echo device or the Google home device can someone comprise your internet connection and listen in on your conversation? And, if you add cameras that are connected to the Internet can a faraway intruder also capture video of you?

Some cars are now connected to the Internet. And cars have been hacked and taken control of.

I encourage everyone to consider this threat and take steps to protect their families.

Remember, many people did not believe that Y2K (the Year 2000 Bug) was real, and because it was largely fixed in time, some still deny it was ever an issue. I was at a conference where someone was giving a speech that I first heard Y2K discussed and it was perfectly clear to me in minutes that this was a huge issue. Businesses and governments spent a significant amount of money and other resources fixing the problem. If they had started earlier, it would have been easier and less disruptive.

Hopefully, industry and the government will get out in front of the “Internet of Things” Threat!


Technology is here, and you can either try to avoid it, or you can embrace it. But, protect yourself with other technology and by being vigilant about security (passwords, etc.) when you use it.

TIFSupply products are part of the solution. None of our products are invasive to your life and privacy.

Our smart home devices will stand guard against fires, plumbing floods, and other emergencies and provide to protect your family and your home from injury and damage.

We prevent these catastrophes from happening and provide you with the peace of mind you deserve.

Until next time,


12 thoughts on “Smart home technology and the internet of things (IoT): risks and rewards to consider”

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