Not all home security systems created equal

It's possible for hackers to tamper with some home security systems.
It's possible for hackers to tamper with some home security systems.(Ring)
Published: Feb. 25, 2022 at 2:56 PM CST

SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Here’s a frightening number: 2,121. That’s the total number of homes burglarized in Shreveport during the past two years. It’s a reality that’s leading more and more people to invest in a home security system. But not all security systems are completely secure.

So much of the world today is wired to the internet, from cell phones to laptops to home appliances. Yes, there is convenience to that smart technology, but it’s not without the risk of hacking. That includes home security systems designed to provide safety and peace of mind.

It’s a practice called jamming: a process would-be burglars use to keep security sensors on a window or door from working and triggering an alarm. While experts aren’t giving a step-by-step explanation of how hackers can do it, Consumer Reports recently tested 10 popular home security systems, and only half blocked jamming. Many of the systems don’t warn owners of the attempted attacks.

“Jamming is when a burglar or hacker blocks the wireless signal of a door sensor, window sensor, or motion sensor in a security system. That allows them to access your home without actually triggering the alarm,” said Dan Wroclawski, home editor for Consumer Reports.

According to Consumer Reports, Adobe Iota, Home Cove Security, Eufy Five Piece Home Alarm Kit, Ring Alarm, and SimpliSafe The Essentials are all susceptible to jamming hacks. But experts say if you have one of these systems, that doesn’t necessarily mean you should run out and get a new one. Each home alarm is still a good option, and they perform well on other tests like motion detection, ease of use, and setup.

No matter which alarm system you have, experts have one simple tip: don’t use the branded yard signs or decals that came with your home security system, since that could help a potential hacker. Instead, use generic signs and decals to ward off would-be burglars.

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