The ever-increasing number of smart or connected devices is also referred to as the “Internet of Things” or “IoT”.  Many smart devices are installed in homes, such as thermostats, home security systems and appliances.

A smart device may pose security risks in initial design or manufacturing or because the consumer hasn’t installed the latest update or patch. If the manufacturer is bought out or just decides to no longer support the device, security vulnerabilities can increase. For example, smart watch maker Pebble was acquired and, in December, 2016, announced that warranty support for Pebble watches was no longer available.

On January 4, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission announce its “IoT Home Inspector Challenge” seeking the submission of technical solutions to allow consumers to effectively monitor and install updates to IoT devices within their homes. The best solution will receive a cash prize of up to $25,000. Submissions are due between March 1 and May 22, 2017.

Read the FTC’s press release here. Contact us at Ossian Law P.C. regarding any information technology law matter.

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