Turn to Tara: Hackable high-tech gift tips

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High-tech gifts are meant to make our lives easier, but you might want to know about some hidden dangers before buying the latest gadget.

Bree Fowler, the technology editor at Consumer Reports, says any devices with limited code, security, and processing power can be easily hackable.

“There is a chance maybe someone can hack my crockpot and empty my bank account,” she says.

Fowler points to video baby monitors as an example.

“There are feeds online, on the dark net, where you can see just dozens of baby monitors in feeds,” she says.

Here are some tips for protecting your family while giving high tech gifts:

  • Make sure passwords are secure and not the same for every device.
  • When it comes to smart toys for your children, nothing says you have to enter the real name or age into the device. Make something up.
  • Anything with Wi-Fi or a bluetooth connection can be hacked, so it’s crucial you keep up with security updates on your home router, especially if you have one more than 5 years old.
  • Consider getting an extra router for your home to keep banking and smart devices on separate networks.
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