Smartwatch is the latest gear that is making headlines amongst tech enthusiasts. It’s a piece of technology that you don’t really need and you can certainly make it through a day without it, but it can provide compelling benefits.
It reminds you of your missed calls, texts, social media notifications, your meetings, helps you keep a watch on your workout activities, and most important of all, it shows you time.
But don’t think for a single moment that smartwatches are invulnerable to different kind of hacks and security breaches, just like other devices.
Earlier in 2016, a fascinating discovery was made in a study by Yingying Chen, a Professor at Stevens Institute of Technology. The research revealed that hackers can obtain your ATM pins through your smartwatch. How did the hackers managed to hack your smartwatch?
Well, they simply used a wireless “sniffer” that’s can track and analyze packets of data sent between the wearable device and the smartphone it wirelessly connects to via Bluetooth.
Professor Chen went on record to state that, “it may be easier than we think for criminals to obtain secret and private information from our wearables by using the right techniques.”
In light of such threats and rising number of smartwatch users , we came up with different ways to protect your smartwatch from hackers and other cyber-goons.
1. Protect your Smartphone
To ensure the safety of your smartwatch, first you need to protect your smartphone. Referring back to the study by Professor Yingying Chen, hackers just need to have access to any one of your smart device, either your phone or smartwatch. People get more prone to hacks when they use unverified 3rd party apps, especially the ones available on Android platforms. For iOS users alike, there is no surety of security, unless apps are purchased from a verified sources. Getting a jail-broken iOS device doesn’t help, it makes you more vulnerable to hackers
2. Timely update of Smartwatch Software
The updates we get for our software on smart devices are there for a reason. The development is an ongoing process to get rid of bugs and malfunctions, and most importantly various security issues. We are usually lazy to carry out the updates on our devices, but it is highly recommended as a stitch in time saves nine.
3. Enable Anti-Theft Settings
There is always a chance that your possessions might get stolen and one of them could be your smartwatch. There are built-in settings in your smartwatch that do not allow it to be paired with an unknown device.
Ensure that these settings are enabled on your device. Also, Apple watch and different Android smartwatches have their respective settings which you need to check. Be proactive and avoid theft.
4. Installing Security Apps
To ensure data security you should surely encrypt your data. If the encryption is not a built-in feature, then we highly recommend that you install apps for security. In addition, make sure that these apps offer top-grade encryption. By using security applications it reduces the risk of information outflow to unknown source. Some of these include Dislock, Pebble Locker, BitDefender wear on, BitDefender Anti-Theft.
5. Avoid Performing Confidential Transactions on your Smartwatch
We would strongly advise that you avoid online shopping with your credit or debit card, make financial transactions, or check your internet bank account, as it elevates the risk of your smartwatch being hacked. Why is this so? All your important information is stored in your device’s history, making it an open target for hackers.
6. Don’t Make Your Wearable Device a Target
It’s not just about keeping your digital wallet and credit cards safe. With the evolution of technology and latest gadgets in our hands, we need to ensure 100% privacy and protection of these devices at all times.
A smartwatch is technically a device that we wear and is visible to prying eyes of thieves. In an age where people lose essential items, smartwatch is a no surprise to be mugged. To protect your confidential and sensitive information, make sure not to flaunt out your smartwatch in open and invite thugs.
7. Erase Unwanted Data & Be Safe
A negligence by majority of users includes keeping sensitive data & information on smartwatch. It is highly advisable not to keep confidential data on your smartwatch , cloud storage or phones. This will ensure reliable protection to your data against snoopers, hackers, identity thieves and various cyber criminals.
Here we have some of the best ways to ensure robust security to your smartwatch. Remember to use these simple tips and you are all safe to go. Anyone of you who has been through security issues on smartwatch or have some tips which we might have missed, do share with us in the comment box below
This is not all, Check out the 5 best smartwatches to buy this 2018/19.
Why Should You Worry About Smart Watches’ Security?
Our testing and research has demonstrated that information acquired from a smartwatch acceleration sensor can be utilized to recoup data about the wearer’s activities and movements and even passwords!
Infecting a smartwatch with information draining malware, lets cybercriminals bring back this data.
They simply need to make an application such as an app that’ll entice the user to download it. all they need to do develop an app and add a capacity to peruse accelerometer information, and transfer it to Google Play. In principle, such an application will pass the malware screening, since there is nothing apparently malicious in what it does.
If your PC password or route to the workplace is of incentive to somebody, a smartwatch is a feasible following tool. For this situation, our recommendation is:
- Take note if your smartwatch is excessively eager for traffic or the battery depletes rapidly.
- Don’t give applications an excessive number of app permission. Specifically, keep an eye out for applications that need to recover account information and geological directions. Without this information, hackers will have to battle to find out that it’s your smartwatch they’ve contaminated.
- Install a security service on your cell phone that can help distinguish spyware before it begins spying.
Can the Movements on You Smartwatch Reveal a Password?
We began with an Android-based smartwatch, composed a nitty gritty application to process and transmit accelerometer information, and dissected what we could get from this information
The information can for sure be utilized to work out if the wearer is strolling or sitting. In addition, it’s conceivable to uncover further and assume if the individual is out for a walk or changing metro trains — the accelerometer designs vary marginally; that is likewise how wellness trackers separate between, state, strolling and cycling.
Signs Your Smart Watch Has Been Targeted by a Spy
- The constant upload of accelerometer readings consumes a fair bit of Internet traffic and zaps the smartwatch battery in a matter of hours, this is one big sign that your smart watch is being targeted by a cyber criminals.
- To steal data-entry information from a smartwatch, attackers need predictable activity followed by data entered several times. The latter part, incidentally, is yet another reason not to use the same password for different services.
- These signs are easy to spot, alerting the user that something is wrong. Both, however, are easily minimized by scooping up data selectively, for example when the target arrives at work, a likely time for password entry.