Security + Wearables
Wearable Technology has proven that it is here to stay, with companies like FitBit hitting high figures in the market and numerous companies bursting into the mainstream with life altering technologies. With ease, we now have devices at our fingertips that compute our world, documenting our lives and filing our personal data into the cyber sphere.
Of course with this rapid advancement in technology, we are now confronted with another dark and looming issue – Security. Everyone has been through the agonizing experience of having their computer hacked or infected by a malicious virus. Some have even lost their beloved machine to said incidences. Many have dealt with the life-altering repercussions of identity theft, with credit cards opened in someone else’s name and bank accounts drained. But those were the good ol’ days.
We are now entering the new frontier of a serious privacy scare that hackers and tech giants are waking up to. Our current rate of technology development has been focused on getting the devices developed and on shelves for consumers in the blink of an eye. This fast lab-to-shop process hasn’t allowed companies proper time to ensure that devices are able to protect their consumer’s information or to even install proper security patches.
In an article for TechRepublic, Gary Davis (chief consumer security evangelist at Intel Security) dropped a terrifying truth bomb:
“They’re basically putting out these devices that are extremely vulnerable to attack.”
It is now possible to use devices for everything: tracking our sleep, monitoring our health and fitness levels, paying for items with our smart watches or phones, and implementing the Internet of Things in our homes to control lighting, our heating, cooking, and event to unlock our doors. All of this is wonderful and exciting, but what does it open us up to?
Companies have been purchasing cyber liability insurance that deals with data breach risks and potential consumer litigation, and with what Davis says, is it any wonder? The personal information stored on your device or on the cloud is of more value than any credit card ever was. The black market is changing as hackers realize the value of our logged cyber footprint.
Aside from the threat of the internet villains and bogey men, third party companies are often able to purchase or “rent” data from the main service provider. This is where targeted advertising online stems from. Even governments are tapping into this wealth of information that we willingly provide.
With all of that being said, you might think that we are trying to discourage the use of Wearable Tech. That would be mistaken. We are very much in support in evolving technologies and see Wearables as the way of the future. We simply feel that tech companies and consumers need to give greater weight to the potentials for security breaches in these early days, and to work towards implementing policies that protect us all.
Until the security protocols catch up, please enjoy your devices – just take some security precautions…
- Make sure you are using different usernames and passwords for each account you have.
- Ensure those passwords are based off a model that is harder to break or crack when hacking (you can google for algorithms ).
- Take care and consideration in the type of information that you are sharing online or letting devices acquire.
- And please, read your terms of agreement before accepting a company’s binding contract.