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bRight Switch Invents Android-Powered Homes

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William K.
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Platinum
Re: Security?
William K.   1/29/2014 1:47:19 PM
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Elizabeth, Now I am wondering about the possibility of an article that examines the means that hackers use to exploit security faults in software, and possibly hardware. The methods that I have used in the distant past were to store the executable code in either proms or E-Proms, or to limit the connection hardware to send only operation. Those worked well, but probably nobody would accept the limitations today. But just consider how very secure an operating system burned into a PROM would be. No way to change anything because writing would not be available. And the memory used to store the configuration parameters could have a removable jumper to allow editing. I have actually used systems like that, and the only damage ever done was bty a sabateur who pulled off the write-inhibit jumpers. But that reqired physically opening the cabinet to do the damage.

Elizabeth M
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Blogger
Re: Security?
Elizabeth M   1/29/2014 4:26:30 AM
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Truer words about security were never spoken, William K. And hacking keeps getting more and more sophisticated.

William K.
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Platinum
Re: Security?
William K.   1/28/2014 4:18:29 PM
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The challenge in providing adequate security is that it is almost never simple and never ever chaep. In addition it is usually not very convenient. 

Elizabeth M
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Blogger
Re: Security?
Elizabeth M   1/28/2014 11:20:32 AM
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Hmm, you are probably right about this, too, William K. Some curious hackers might just break into the system just to spy on people, just because they can. It also could be used by potential thieves who might want to break into the home, so use the information to find out when people are at home or not at home. At any rate, all of this means security is definitely an issue that must be addressed.

William K.
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Security?
William K.   1/27/2014 3:34:56 PM
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It just occurred to me that it may be an interesting thing for hackers to tap into whatever indoor security cameras may be installed. That would be a serious breach of privacy that might freakout  a lot of folks. And security cameras for checking on pets and kids have been one of the touted possibilities for several years. "use your phone to check on the kids, the sitter, or the pets" is a line that I know I have seen. And that would be one of the systems that I would anticipate being the most desirable to have. And likewise the system to just listen to the house to check on it. So it is likely that snoopers might find hacking in to be very entertaining.

Elizabeth M
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Blogger
Re: Security?
Elizabeth M   1/27/2014 10:05:05 AM
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Yes, you are probably right, William K. I guess just because I can´t see the point of messing with someone´s lights just for fun doesn´t mean there are a lot of hackers who wouldn´t like to do such a thing. I can completely see your point.

William K.
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Security?
William K.   1/27/2014 9:58:51 AM
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Elizabeth, I think that a lot of hackers just do it for the challenge, or to make some organization look bad. Why do you think that so many things attack Microsoft products? That company has thousands of enemies.

And I can immagine that some hackers may just want to see how many houses they can get the lights flashing off and on at. The more sinister hackers may attempt to bring down the electrical grid by cycling all of the high power appliances on and off. Just picture a whole neighborhood's central AC units switching on at the same time. And there are secondary methods to disable a security system such as changing the arrivalhome time setting, which may automatically switch off the alarms, Or ask the system to open the garage door. 

The point about the lack of any Google security is certainly valid, almost weekly I get emails from hacked Google/facebook acounts, so it seems that none of that area has been secured.

So really, the downsides of those unintended consequences far outweigh any percieved benefits, as I see it.

Elizabeth M
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Blogger
Re: Security?
Elizabeth M   1/27/2014 9:45:13 AM
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Good point, AnandY, this is an issue that needs to be addressed. Although I have to say, I am not sure hackers would be so interested in infiltrating someone´s home just to mess with their lights! But it could definitely be a threat to in-home security systems also controlled by such an Android-powered system, so definitely a big concern.

Elizabeth M
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Just use the phone
Elizabeth M   1/27/2014 9:31:20 AM
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Thanks for the feedback, William K and Lou. I would tend to agree with you guys that the mobile and wireless way to control the home is the best way to go but I think it´s still worthwhile and interesting to see the different approaches to this. Don´t you agree: bRight switch is just one option out of many that are cropping up.

AnandY
User Rank
Gold
Re: Security?
AnandY   1/23/2014 6:10:29 AM
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One concern that has come up over and over again whenever Android apps are concerned is the issue of security. The hands-off approach adopted by Google when it comes to application security means that all apps on the platform have equal rights and the same goes for the bRight switch. This means that a hacker could just as easily access and re-programme your home unit by simply hacking into your phone with the help of malicious apps.

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