Hackers can gain access to more than you may possibly begin to imagine. Check out these surprising vulnerabilities:
Garage door openers
Your “clicker,” albeit convenient, can be easily commandeered by willful hackers. The tiny wires and contact points that comprise its guts can be modified to accept a USB port, and there is software that is easy to obtain online that can alter how it operates. In fact, there are several online “how to” tutorials for fledgling hackers-to-be that walk them through the process of hacking a garage door in mere moments. But buck up there, Brentwood! Usually only older – as in, manufactured more than 5 years ago – garage door systems are susceptible to this tricky tactic. If you know for a fact yours is ancient or fear that it might be on the cusp of dying out, consider upgrading to eliminate the possibility of your garage getting compromised.
Automobile thieves don’t need to bother themselves with busting windows or picking locks anymore. Well, that’s not if they have the smarts to unlock the car and start the engine with a mere text message. Sophisticated automotive systems such as OnStar and those similar employ the same cellular technology that can be found in the average cell phone. Only Brentwood residents with vehicles equipped with a system (such as OnStar) need worry here. Older cars with fewer bells and whistles are impervious to these advanced hacking techniques. Anyone looking to purchase a new car in the near future should keep this in mind when shopping around and know that you can disable those features if you feel especially worried that your car might get stolen.
A popular device, a baby monitor can allow parents to hear, or even see, their child when he or she is in a different room. What a lot of baby monitor users don’t realize is that the dozen or so wireless channels used by the devices are able to be picked up outside the house. This can result in anyone who has a similar unit or a wireless receiver being allowed an undetectable view into your home. Note that most new models boast "frequency hopping" technology that changes channels at random, in order to better protect privacy.Those in Brentwood with babies should take a good, long look at the list of features printed on the outside of the box before buying a baby monitor to make sure what you are getting.
Don’t forget that one of the simplest ways to protect yourself from identity-snatching hackers while using the internet, like when you submit forms online for balance transfer offers, is to make sure you only ever enter personal or financial information on secure websites. Not sure? Have a look in the address bar – you should see an “s” after the “http” and/or a padlock symbol. That will allow you to know and that peace of mind will be worth it, in the end.