Many people are looking into equipping their homes with smart locks. They reduce the need for carrying house keys, alert you when someone enters your residence and even allow you to remotely let people in during an emergency.
Some wonder how secure these locks are and how they compare to the traditional option. Here’s what security these smart locks offer, some of their features and whether they are the right option for your home.
A smart lock is an internet-connected device that lets people use their smartphones to unlock and lock their homes. This provides many benefits in terms of security and comfort. These devices work with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
Smart locks allow the homeowner to access the device and unlock the house remotely. This can be useful if someone requires entry when you are not there, such as a neighbor who needs to feed your pets.
While the design of these locks can differ, most manufacturers install both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capabilities. This is because Bluetooth alone can create challenges and limit what is possible with a smart lock.
One great feature some of these smart devices possess is the ability to automatically lock the doors when you leave the designated perimeter. This can be helpful if you often wonder whether you’ve locked your front door.
Both options offer the same type of security with their own advantages and disadvantages. For example, smart locks reduce the chance of forgetting to lock your doors at night.
Some of them allow you to schedule a time when they should activate. Also, the device will send you an alert if someone tries to tamper with the lock or successfully breaks in. You can have the smart lock automatically message the authorities or a security company if this happens. These locks are also considerably more challenging to pick than regular ones.
Many people wonder if these types of locks are susceptible to hacking. The answer is yes, but manufacturers take precautions to prevent this. There are also procedures you can take to decrease the likelihood further. Any device that connects to the internet is at risk of being hacked.
However, implementing a few best practices reduces the possibility of this happening. You can frequently change your Wi-Fi password, keep all systems up to date, install anti-virus software and utilize multifactor authentication.
Many people like that smart locks reduce the need for carrying house keys. You only require your smartphone. In addition, some of them add a level of comfort by automatically unlocking the door as soon as you come within range. This is especially useful when carrying groceries. This way, the door opens on its own and you do not need to scrounge through your pocket for your keys.
However, what happens when you lose your mobile phone? It depends on how the manufacturer addresses these types of situations. For this reason, many recommend choosing a smart lock option that still uses a key or requires a passcode to gain access.
Smart locks are safe, but there are considerations to keep in mind. It is better to do adequate research about the lock you want and buy from well-respected manufacturers. Many offer an extra security layer, such as encryption and two-factor authentication.
The latter kicks in when you try to change the lock’s password. Usually, it asks for a one-time PIN to verify you are making the changes. According to research, users can stop 99.9% of attacks from hackers trying to access their accounts if they use two-factor authentication.
In addition, when a burglar tries to guess the code, it will lock them out after too many failed attempts. It will also alert you of the incident.
Smart locks are especially a great choice if your home has existing security systems, such as motion cameras. For example, you can enable a feature to allow the lock to activate when the camera detects movement.
Another factor that makes smart locks more secure than the traditional option is that you can create passcodes specific to certain individuals. For example, if you have a cleaner, you can designate a code for them to use. This reduces the need for less secure practices, such as leaving a key for them under a doormat or keeping the backdoor unlocked.
You can also set the code to only work at predefined hours. If it is past the predefined time, the door will lock automatically — if it was open — or the passcode will no longer work. This can be helpful if you have kids coming home from school.
Using smart locks is entirely up to personal preference. They have useful benefits, such as providing convenience for disabled or elderly residents and preventing lockouts. However, you must consider the drawbacks before buying and installing them. One of the major issues is when you live in an area with frequent power outages or if you lose your mobile phone. That can make it challenging to regain access to your home.
Also, individuals less used to technology face a learning curve as they adjust to using smart options. It might be easier and take less effort for them to rely on a traditional lock.
It comes down to your needs and if it makes sense for your home. If you are considering one, ensure you perform adequate research to help you determine whether it is worth it.
If implemented correctly, smart locks are an effective way of making your home more secure and adding a level of comfort. They offer many advantages, and it’s not surprising to see so many individuals implementing them into their home security.