Have you ever wondered What Happens to Smart Home Data? How much data is generated by Your Home, How Secure is your Home Data? Hell!! where does your Home-Data is stored(read stolen& Exploited..)Let’s try to explore these questions.
Digital Interaction Footprint
With the rise of Smart things, an interaction with smart devices leaves a digital footprint. With so many touch-based electronic interfaces… leaves a Digital trail…
It could be in the form of
- Ordering food/items
- Interacting with the Coffee Vending machine.
- How frequently you take bath, the amount of water used.
- How much music do you listen to?
- Your fitness routine based on a fitness tracker.
And many more.
When all this data is combined, it gives a huge insight into the Lifestyle and over-all profile of a person…
Now Imagine Your Home being smart equipped with multiple smart Devices, your interaction is more electronic than physical… With so many
- Smart Kitchen Equipment
- Home-Security Systems.
- Motion detection cameras.
- Mood Lighting
- Home-Cleaning bots
- Windows smart curtains
- TV/FAN/AC/ Geyser.
working in tandem would generate a huge amount of data per day. The exact value is speculative but a 3000 sqft home would generate up to 10GB/day .
For the sake of simplicity: A Person’s Whole Day activity can be tracked by Just3 things…
- Android mobile phone: Google can track your whole day
- Fitness tracker can track your physical activity level, nap time
- Coffee machine can track how much Caffeine & Sugar you are consuming per day.
Connected Homes were and still are part of the sci-fi movies, A good example of Prominent movies on Connected Home is “The minority Report”. This movie details of Connected Home of the future… is still relevant with 18yrs in the future…
At Present we see emerge of Smart Home Assistant devices likes of Alexa & Google Home. These devices are result of years of effort and advancement in NLP. So, Engineers were
- Successful in creating voice to text and vice-versa.
- Applied AI &ML to understand the intent of the phrase.
- Search on the internet and find a suitable answer: This is what IBM-Watson did?
- Receive a Command and Comply with it.
Earlier Command line/keyboard was the input, now voice has become the user-input and out-put too…
With So many new Smart-Devices such as Smart-Lights, Smart-Power-Switch boards, Smart-door-locks, Smart- Door camera and the list is endless…These devices provide a unique value proposition.
Adds convenience and values while utilizing the existing infrastructure & tool.
Aka “The Smart-Phone”
A Smart-Lock has a value in locking a Door and remotely operating it, no need for Physical key,
Popular with BNB’s for providing access to the room, Lockers in ZYM, etc. The value ends there…
As of now Smart-Devices are controlled by Smart-Phones 95%,
Now in future many smart things will combined will provide much bigger values, this stage has not come but is already being tested and rolled out will be commonly available with masses in another 2-3 yrs.
Data Generation: Volume
How Much Data a Smart-Home Generates?
Smart-Homes Can generate up to 10GB of data per day. To give you a perspective A Boeing 737 flight generates about 90GB of data per-hour.
With AI and machine Learning on rise… This data is gold mine for Various Companies, Companies can then mine the data and generate fruitful insights.
Ask a Data-Scientist what will they do with 1-year worth of Home-Automation data.
For a Whole community of people roughly 1000 persons.
So somehow if Human eye investigates this data it becomes a privacy concern but if a Bot/Machine Learning Algorithms looks at them it of no concern…
Smart Home Data Perspective
A Smart Home Data can be seen from following perspective
- Data Security
- Data Collection
- Data Breach
- Data analytics
So, the next Obvious Question comes to mind is.
How to Protect your Home-Data?
As the number of Smart-things is on the rise and use-case of smart-things interaction becomes relevant, Controlling the devices via mobile and Smart-Home Assistants will pose problems and would become obsolete when the number of Home devices increases more than 10… Secondly one would expect various sub-routines to execute autonomously.
Give your router a name.
Don’t stick with Default manufacturer given name — it helps to identify the make or model. Give it an unusual name not associated with you or your street address. You don’t want your router name to give away any personal identifiers.
Use a strong encryption method for Wi-Fi.
Set up a guest network.
Check the settings for your devices.
Can Your Home be Hacked?
Yes!!!, with so many smart-devices your home is an easy prey for some sick-mindset of people…
- 90% of WIFI-Routers have factory default User-id and password enabled, No one bothers to change them. Once your Home WIFI-Router is hacked then there is no defense to Protect your Smart-things/devices.
- With So many new Smart-Devices coming to market, the emphasis while selling is Plug N Play, Seamless Connectivity, Auto-Discovery. People are unaware of device
- Default Configurations
- Personal Data that Device-Shares with Manufacturers
- 3rd Party Apps especially Mobile-Apps share Gather and share Data. (How many of you Read “Terms & Conditions” before clicking -“I AGREE”?
- Imagine Your Home-Security System Being hacked and all your camera feed is either watch online or stolen, that would be a serious breach of Privacy.
How to Secure Your Smart Home?
It is not Alexa or Google Assistant or Nest, the answer is Home-HUB. The most simple and effective way is to deny the smart-Devices access to the internet. Yes, you heard it right. Smart things will surely latch to WIFI, ble but this mySmartwifi will not have access to internet.
- Keep a Separate Smart-Home network or otherwise keep a Guest network for friends & guests to do browsing separate from Home-internet Network, what you compromise on Mobility and Seamless connectivity.
- A Home-HUB Controls all Smart-Devices and all Smart-Home Data leaving Home-HUB is protected by Strong Encryption and Firewall. Strong Firewall Protecting Home-Automation network from external World, it mimics like an intranet, with Selective access to External world (aka the internet)
What is Home-HUB?
Home-Hub is a smart-compact device tucked little up in your home roof, Whose Job is to take care of Connecting, configuring, tracking & Securing Smart-thing/Devices. It is a little Go to device between You & all smart-Devices you have purchased! Home-Hub is designed to be compatible with 100 brands, 1000’s of smart-things/devices. It has multiple Radios.
- Mesh-WIFI & BLE
This solves the problem of cluttering of mobile app on your iPhone or Android.
With tens of Smart-things coming in picture Home-Hub takes pain out of user to install multiple devices.
- Mobile is not enough to control and Process all the data, Command, events, Signal, and run sub-routines.
- Dedicated Hardware & Software is required to Process multiple Sources of data, listen to all events, Logs all Events, A person would not like to be bugged with all the events happening like Raining, No-water, Water-leakage… etc. But would surely like to be reminded when asked for?
- Control Your Home in Auto-pilot mode…Run Applications like IFTTT & Node-Red.
- Multiple Radios: Not All Smart-Things are wifi and BLE supported. There are multiple wireless protocols for IoT devices Z-wave, Zigbee, Lora, Sigfox, Mesh, NFC. Based on different use-cases. (Data-rate, Latency, Real-time, Power Consumption, Range/Distance)
HOME-HUB OPTION 1
HOME-HUB OPTION 2
Option 2 has redundant Data Link, In-Case of Power Outage, Your Home security is not compromised. Home-HUB is still functional with Battery back-up and LTE-Data Link.
Further Read detailed article on Smart Home Hub – Everything That You Need To Know