Home security is a topic we wish we never had to think about. Wouldn’t it be great if we could just leave our homes every day and return home without having to deal with keys? The bad news is, we don’t live in a world where we can be that trusting. The good news is, recently a number of “Internet of Things” or IoT products have come on the market to help us keep our homes and our families safe. Security is never a guarantee, but with these items, you may find some peace of mind.
Motion-detecting flood lights are great security measures. But what if they not only followed the motion, but also had a camera for recording and remote watching? The Nightwatcher Motion Tracking Flood Light does just that. The flood light, made with LED lights, will actually turn to follow the motion. An onboard SD card will store the recordings of up to 2,000 events according to the manufacturer. When you connect this light with your wifi, you will be able to watch color video of what is happening after the light sends you a real-time alert that it has been activated.
Click next to read about a product that makes your house “self aware” during a fire or similar emergency.
2. Nest Protect
Breaking and entering shouldn’t be the only topic of discussion related to keeping your home safe. The Nest Protect is a smart smoke and carbon monoxide detector. If you have multiple Nest Protects throughout the house they will work together. If one detects a problem, all connected devices will sound the alarm and announce a risk — they’ll announce it very loudly, I might add. The Nest Protect will also verbalize the location of the problem when it is location-specific (say a fire in the kitchen, basement, bedroom, etc.).
If you have a Nest Thermostat, the Nest Protect will even automatically shut down the furnace to prevent additional carbon monoxide leaking, or it will shut down the fan to prevent giving fresh oxygen to a fire. Not only is this a good way to keep your family safe in case of fire or a carbon monoxide emergency, it is also a good way to help you protect your home while you are away. Alerts (including motion detection if you want) can be sent to your phone wherever in the world you may be.
Up next, a smart key for a smart lock.
Lock manufacturer Kwikset has engineered a rather impressive new lock and key. The Kevo Smart Lock looks like a normal lock. However, you can manage it without ever needing a physical key. The lock can be opened via Bluetooth with either your smartphone or a key fob. First of all, this makes getting in the house easy. Also, as long as your phone is on you (you don’t even have to take it out of your pocket) you can just tap the lock to open the door.
Second, you can issue temporary keys with expiration dates. This way, you can give a guest or a service provider (cable, electric, etc.) temporary access. Finally, the lock not only keeps track of when the door opens, but also of who opens it. The digital keys, whether permanent or temporary, are unique to the user. That way you can tell who is home and who isn’t (and when), all from your phone.
Smart front doors are great, but what about my garage door?
MyQ is a smart garage door opener from Chamberlain. At first, the idea of a smart garage door doesn’t sound all that impressive. However, after using one myself for several months, I can say it has been very useful. You can customize the alerts that the door generates. For example, if the door is left open for a certain amount of time, you get a notification on your phone. You will occasionally forget that the garage door is left open (it does happen, and to all of us) and when you do, it is an open invitation for your house to be robbed.
Additionally, you can check the status of the garage door while away. I have used this while on vacation to check in on the house, on the family, and on friends who are looking after our animals. I also use the MyQ as a remote lock, opening and shutting the door for said family and friends who are helping out around the house.
Last item of the day, a doorbell that is also a video camera.
Ring is an Internet-connected doorbell. Several things will happen when someone rings this doorbell. First, you will get an alert on your smartphone. It doesn’t matter if you are in your house, out shopping for groceries, or on the other side of the planet. Then you can see video of who it is, and talk to them via your phone. You can tell the UPS guy to leave the package on the steps or convince a sketchy-looking bunch that you are actually home, but not interested in opening the door. While the doorbell isn’t being rung, it can also function as a motion-detecting camera. You can see live video on your camera during the day, or use the built-in night vision to keep tabs on what’s going on.
The “Internet of Things” has allowed us to improve our security. We can better manage our doors, keep tabs on dangers such as fire and carbon monoxide, and keep some peace of mind while we are away. These five IoT security devices are definitely worth considering for your home.