Hot Topics

Be afraid! Your fridge might be hacked in future

  Forum Editor 11:15 21 Dec 2016

and your guilty eating pleasures published on Social media, for all to see.

The Internet Of Things, which is rapidly becoming a part of our home lives could turn out to be a way in for hackers.

Imagine coming down on Christmas morning to discover that your fridge has been off all night, your TV won't turn on, and your central heating programmer has been locked.

  LastChip 11:50 21 Dec 2016

It's a very real danger, as manufacturers in the main are not bothered about security. They're only concerned with selling their product.

Security has never been a high priority in their "gadgets" and people should be very aware, they're opening themselves up to failure.

Personally, I've lived my life (on the whole) without smart gadgets and see no reason not to continue that way.

  wee eddie 12:23 21 Dec 2016

Frequently, the cost of such Smart Gadgets bears little relation to their potential Cost Saving, and if you include the cost of maintenance, any saving that exists disappears like snow off a dyke

  oresome 12:52 21 Dec 2016

There have been some very useful technological advances over the years, but in other instances, the designers are producing 'solutions' to problems most of us simply didn't know we had.

However, it's difficult to avoid many of these innovations, whether you like them or not, as the manufacturing price falls and they become mainstream on mass market products.

Perhaps if the manufacturer had to spend more on security, they would be restricted to high end products and we could choose not to have them.

  bumpkin 14:09 21 Dec 2016

There is also the "must have" element, as much as I like the sound of Hive I don't need it although it is probably very useful for others.

  Forum Editor 18:28 21 Dec 2016

"I don't need it although it is probably very useful for others."

Electronics manufacturers feel the need to load up their products with facilities. My new smart TV connects itself to the internet as soon as I turn it on, and it tells me about it. It's an Android device, and easy to use, etc., but to be honest I have no idea what it's up to while we sit there, watching the latest Scandy drama. For all I know, it is quietly telling some database which programmes we watch. In the few months we have been together it has already updated itself twice - at least that's what it tells me.

Of course, I could find out what goes on, but so far I just haven't bothered. I think we'really becoming so used to using these things that we just leave them to do what they do without looking under the bonnet, and therein, as they say, lies the rub.

I imagine that one of the first things designers do, as they sit down to design the latest household device, is say 'let's make sure it can connect to the internet'. My son's new washing machine automatically connects to the web and downloads software updates. He can communicate with it from work via an app on his phone.

The world of technology is at the same time becoming more wonderful and more scary, and we all have to take steps to ensure that we have at least an idea of how our devices are chattering away via distant servers.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 18:52 21 Dec 2016

Two washing machines chatting away via the internet

One says "I'm a Hoover"

the other says "You need your head looking at mate, I call the plumber"


  Bazzaman 19:27 21 Dec 2016


If I were you I'd give it the cold shoulder (aka Frigid Aire)

  Bazzaman 19:28 21 Dec 2016


You make it sound like the TV connects to the Internet without any input / action from you? How can this be or does it have a built in SIM?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 20:02 21 Dec 2016


Modern TVs can be connected by an Ethernet cable or most have wireless built in.

  oresome 20:05 21 Dec 2016

Our 'smart' TV, a Sony, takes minutes to load, during which time you can't switch channels. On occasions it fails to obey a remote control command and then switches itself off and on again along with the resulting loading delay again before returning to normal operation.

Updates can result in the channel list reverting to default factory setting and future recording details then being lost.

Actually trying to access the internet and typing an address via the TV remote is sufficiently challenging that it's rarely used. The only useful apps amongst dozens available are the BBC catch up service and YouTube.

My wife wanted to use the YouTube app for the first time the other night to watch Michael Ball live in concert from Manchester. After 10 minutes of stuttering and insufficient memory messages she gave up, put her coat on and went round to our daughters to continue watching.

She has fibre from Virgin, but the buffering there was a damn sight worse than our slow copper.

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