The sudden rise in the smart home technologies isn’t unforeseen as the strides made by the Artificial Intelligence was expected to make it a way to the consumer electronics. Google has been swift in bringing the digital assistant to a wider audience by launching the Google Assistant on the Android platform and then using it to power its smart speakers named Google Home. It is a great device for practical purposes and you can get a lot done by simply saying so literally. But like any other device which remains connected with the internet, it isn’t completely secure.
Here are some of the smart ways which will help in securing your Google Home Devices to a great extent.
1. It’s time to enable the voice match
Smart Speaker works by carefully understanding your voice commands and it is essential to ensure that your voice is matched perfectly with Google Home devices. Google Home has its very own secure and robust Voice Match functionality which allows the device to know the person for who it will be working for the days to come. This voice match allows it to understand, answer and perform the varied tasks asked by the users. At the same time, it even presents strangers from issuing commands or accessing information sensitive to the user.
Google Home Devices also come with a Multi-user function which allows a different member of household register their voice and take control of the device on the go. If you are looking for some really smart and highly personalised results then it is vital to ensure that the device recognizes you as the primary user. Not enabling the voice match will also mean that anyone can get to listen to your personalised answers which will ultimately make your device vulnerable.
2. Don’t link innumerable external devices
Once a person buys a Google Home, the inert desire happens to be around connecting as external devices as possible without giving any due thought. Or after the period next few weeks, people tend to buy more Google Home compatible devices to make most of the voice commands. Google Home essentially allows users to do more than just enable and disable the connected device. But this great utility can turn into a nightmare if any of these connected gets hacked or compromised due to the presence of vulnerability. Therefore, make it a habit of connecting only those devices which are required at the moment or which are used more frequently.
3. Don’t link too many personal accounts
Google maintains that all the communication happening with the connected devices and personal accounts are secure. All the data sent by the Google Home device to the Google servers are encrypted which reduces the security risks. But serious issues can arise if the Google data centres or servers which those data gets comprised in any way. Google Home usually encourages users to link their various account with the Google Home in order to give it better control in offering wider voice-based command and functionality. It is essential that user avoid sharing banking information related to the credit cards and other kinds of payment accounts with the Google Home devices.
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4. Be smart and get rid of the old recordings
Smart speakers are known to keep the audio snippets on their servers in order to process the user’s command and provide adequate response quickly. Similarly Google assistant keeps the conversation history right on its servers which don’t get removed unless you think about doing so. Most of the users think that the kind of conversation they have with the assistant isn’t much of importance or grave danger since it revolves around music, movies, current affairs and other menial jobs like what’s time now, which movie to watch today and so forth.
But users also share very sensitive information with the assistant like their commute details, banking information, health and personal information which could lead to identity theft or some other serious setback if it gets in the hands of the hackers. Users can delete the stored conversation by going to the My Activity option in the Google Account. Herein you will find a long list of questions in the form of a voice recording which you can listen to and delete one by one or by at once.
5. Make use of two-factor authentication
Google’s two-factor authentication system might not be loved by many as it makes the process of logging into the account tougher but it is more secure than the usual method at the same time. This method adds an extra layer of security which helps in keeping the personal data safer from the malicious actors. This method will simply make it impossible for a hacker to get into your account and listen to the conversation you had with the device or the personal information stored on your Google account.
6. Keep your device mute when not in use
It isn’t wise to allow others to hear to your conversation all the time and the same is true for smart speakers. A number of times Google Home devices bring laughter and embarrassment when it picks up the misheard commands and offers a response to them. Saying commands like Ok Google and Hey Google without even exclusively using it will result in triggering the device on and it will start recording the conversation in order to search for the valid command. Google Home comes with a mute button right on the device which will turn its listening capability completely off. It is wise to turn the device off or mute when indulging in private conversation with spouse, friends or family members.