Are smart appliances safe?

Contributed by A. Michele Parrish

More and more homes are getting smart appliances. They have refrigerators, toilets, garage doors, thermostats and other appliances that are connected to the Internet and can be controlled from anywhere. The problem is can they also be controlled by anyone or just the homeowners? With the proliferation of smart appliances are homeowners exposing their homes and therefore their private lives to outsiders without knowing it? In this paper I explain what are smart appliances and how and why the market is growing, why they are desired, how smart appliances can be compromised and how consumers and vendors can make smart appliances more secure.

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