All These Devices Connect to the Internet

All These Devices Connect to the Internet

Did you know there are over a dozen kinds of consumer electronics that can access online content? You might not be aware that your newer digital photo frame can download and upload photos from the web. It could also get on Facebook and YouTube.

List of Devices That Can Go Online

The internet-connected world grows each day. The content available continues to expand and the number of devices that can utilize online content increases as well.

“Oh, I didn’t know this device could do that!” You might be surprised to learn just how many items in your home could go online. Below is a list of the types of devices that can currently access online content:

  • Cell phones
  • Computers (desktop or laptop)
  • Digital media players (e.g., Amazon Fire TV and Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Google Nexus Player, Nvidia Shield TV, and Roku)
  • Digital photo frames
  • DVD or Blu-ray players
  • E-readers (e.g., Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, and Sony Reader)
  • Game consoles (e.g., Microsoft Xbox, Nintendo Wii and Wii U, and Sony Playstation)
  • Internet-connected toys
  • Audio-video receivers
  • Portable internet devices (Fujitsu Lifebook)
  • Smart speakers (e.g., Amazon Dot and Echo, Apple HomePod, Google Home, and Samsung Galaxy Home)
  • Smart TVs
  • Smartphones
  • Smartwatches
  • Tablets (e.g., Amazon Fire, Apple iPad, Microsoft Surface, and Samsung Galaxy)
  • Vehicles
  • Wireless speakers (e.g., Bose SoundTouch, JBL Flip, and Sonos Play)

How many of these devices do you own? While you may not be aware of their online functionality, you might want to investigate whether your children have discovered this.

You might want to investigate whether your children have discovered this.

As a tool, technology can be used for good and noble purposes as well as bad or illegitimate purposes. Be sure that you know to talk about these things with your family and friends especially as it relates to new technology. Accountability software from Accountable2You can help you monitor activity on many of these devices.

Also Consider Your Privacy and Security

While you might be concerned about what content these devices can access online, be sure to consider how these devices could also be used to compromise your privacy and security.

The burgeoning Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of devices that can process, send, and receive data. The devices listed above might have some or all of this connectivity. But these features might also be found in such things as kitchen appliances, door locks, security systems, and children’s toys.

These devices might contain any combination of these monitoring, processing, and reporting features:

  • Microphone with a recording device
  • Optics or cameras
  • Motion sensors
  • Acoustic sensors
  • Speakers
  • Wireless receiver and transmitter
  • Battery
  • Programmable memory
  • Connection to cloud computing

The data captured by a device can be monitored and controlled remotely. Having remote access to your devices and data sounds good as long as you are the one doing it. But take care that the devices you are trusting with sensitive data are worthy of that trust.

Several of the devices require an app to run the device. Generally, these apps have not proven themselves to be overly concerned with security or with the privacy of your data. Be sure to read the privacy agreement and terms of service associated with any app.

Take care that the devices you are trusting with sensitive data are worthy of that trust.

What should you be able to answer about a device before you trust it in your home?

  • What information is uploaded to the internet?
  • How secure is the device from hacking and eavesdropping?
  • How is that information secured against hackers?
  • How is that information shared with third parties?

Enjoy and Beware of Technology

We receive so many benefits from our technology. But be also mindful of the dangers inherent to living in an online world. Take the necessary precautions to avoid or otherwise address the threats. And be sure to communicate regularly and openly with your loved ones about what and how technology is used in your home.

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April 1, 2019
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