Introduction Smart door locks are effective, easy, and comfortable to use. They're the choice of most smart homes. They're the new trends outdating traditional key lockers.
Smart door lock is a software-enabled device that lets users mechanically lock and unlock doors with the use of a simple voice, tap of a finger, key fobs, remotely through an app, etc.
One of the major reasons for using smart door locks is to boost the security of properties. So you want to be sure if your smart door locks can give you that security you've always wanted.
Specifically, you want to know if your smart door locks can be hacked for whatever reason. We would hold you by the hands here and explain whether smart door locks can be hacked.
Can a Hacker Hack a Smart Door Lock?
Yes! Just like any other wireless technology, smart door locks can be hacked. It's a mechanical device and so it doesn't have a 100% security guarantee.
Smart door locks use digitally programmed wireless connections to function. In hacking smart door locks, it's usually the wireless software connection that can be hacked. The lock itself may not be hacked, except if it would be broken.
There is always some security compromise on the wireless connection before your smart door lock can be hacked. Moreso, communication between the lock and controlling device may not always be secured.
How Smart Door Locks Can Be Hacked and The Various Ways to Avoid Hacking
There are several methods to hack smart door locks. Some require using sophisticated technologies to retrieve security data (such as the password) to the smart door lock. Similarly, there are different ways and precautions to secure the lock from hacking.
Okay so, let's dive into the discussion!
• A hacker can hack your smart door lock by using a Bluetooth sniffer such as Bleno or Ubertooth One. These are technologies that a hacker can use to listen to and decode encrypted information especially if your smart door lock functions by Bluetooth connection.
A hacker can place a sniffing device close to your door. So, whenever you then use the smart door, the device captures and encrypts the command communicated by the app to the lock. This gives the hacker access to your smart door locks.
However, it may be difficult to hack using a Bluetooth sniffer. This is because the hacker would need to physically come within a range close to your lock before hacking it. To prevent any case of Bluetooth sniffing, always use a complex Bluetooth authentication system on your smart doors.
• A hacker can also hack your smart door locks by firstly hacking your home Wi-Fi and then accessing your computer device to retrieve your smart door lock's password if you had earlier saved it there. This is also very difficult to execute.
To protect your smart door locks, always use a non-predictable password for your Wi-Fi. Preferably, use a non-intelligible combination of words and letters. Also, avoid sharing your Wi-Fi password with strangers and only use a reliable, secured smart hub. Don't use a plain-text password.
• With the password, anyone can open your smart door lock One of the easiest ways to hack your smart door lock is when the lock's password has been compromised. This usually happens when a hacker gets access to your phone or computer which expressly contains the password to your smart door lock.
To prevent this, immediately delete all your confidential information whenever your phone or computer is stolen. If you use an Android phone, you can delete data from the 'Find My Device' tab.
• If your smart door lock uses only voice command, this may make it vulnerable to hacking. A hacker can clone your voice and get access to the lock. To prevent such, don't use only voice commands to control your smart lock. If at all you want to use voice command for your smart door locks, ensure the lock also requires the use of a voice pin code.
• Smart door locks can be hacked with the use of a flattened screwdriver to remove the lock itself. This is literally breaking and damaging the lock.
However, this may be difficult to execute especially if your smart door locks come with an alarm feature that notifies you whenever there's any attempt to break your lock. Although it can be easily done if the smart door lock is not securely fastened to your door.
• Your smart door locks can also be hacked when there are excess bugs in their software system. With the massive presence of bugs in the Bluetooth authentication protocols of smart door locks, hackers can access your locks without any authentication.
Also, a hacker with specialized software can fix a virus in the APK file linked to your smart door lock app and then gain access to the app. With this, the hacker would be able to interpret the APK code and then access your smart door lock.
The vulnerability in Z-wave signals can also cause hacking. To avoid this, always use a smart door lock with competent and effective software to ward off any bugs and third-party intrusion
• Hackers can hack your smart door locks by way of replay attacks. Attackers use software that intercept with data transmission in your smart door locks.
• Hackers can also access your smart door locks by repeatedly inputting random, permutated passwords. If a hacker guesses your password correctly, then he or she would have access to your smart door locks.
In fact, repeatedly inputting permutated passwords can cause the lock to enter an error state and unlock itself. To prevent this, always use unpredictable passwords for your smart door locks.
Also, use a two-factor authentication security model to protect your smart door lock. With this, you would always need to input your password and any other authentication you choose. This would make it difficult for your smart door lock to be hacked.
Always ensure your Lock's firmware is updated. You can confirm this by connecting to the Wi-Fi of the lock itself.
Conclusion You may wonder whether smart door locks are worth it. Well, they are. Yes, they can be hacked but it's not easy to hack a smart door lock. If you adhere to the preventive measures we've highlighted above, you can be sure your smart door lock would be super safe for use.