Is Your New Smart Oven Really Smart or a Handy Door Through Which Hackers Gain Entry? 

NAGRA Scout Blog
Learn more about NAGRA Scout, the new home network security solution by NAGRA.

By Tim Pearson, Senior Director, Product Marketing

I recently visited a friend’s house for dinner.  In the current age of confinement, this was a major step forward and we had much to catch-up on.  Spotting their new oven, my hosts proudly told me that they could now switch it on remotely, so it warmed up and was ready to start cooking when they arrived home. Great!  Such innovation.

However, what if the oven manufacturer saw the ‘smart’ capability as a handy marketing hook through which to sell the oven rather than focus too much on the level of security surrounding the smart features? Put another way, how much thought has been invested in how secure that smart new oven is when attached to the home’s WiFi network?  Equally, what about that nice new smart doorbell I spotted on the way in, and then of course there’s the well-documented case of the not-so-secure baby monitor.

We continue to fill our homes with the latest IoT gadgets. With 46Bn devices in our homes worldwide in 2021 according to Juniper Research, Statista provide an estimate valuation of the IoT market of ~$500Bn. It will therefore come as no surprise that this represents a new hunting ground for hackers looking to acquire the personal data of unsuspecting homeowners.

To explore this further, NAGRA recently commissioned some research with Parks Associates.  They found that almost 80% of consumers are increasingly concerned about privacy and security, and 33% are already experiencing issues.  When it comes to who consumers look to for protection, 55% trust their broadband provider to safeguard their personal information with 22% favoring a router with built-in home network security features. 

Like any monitoring solution, knowing where the tolerances should be set is key.  For example, consumers don’t want to be pinged about every technical issue that exists on their home network – most of us wouldn’t know how to react anyway – so a solution that only alerts consumers to credible threats is key.  Equally, consumers want to know that their home bubble, containing the devices and personal information of those that matter most, is secure – and remains so when they leave the home too. 

The challenge at the core of this growing problem is security and that’s something NAGRA has plenty of experience in across the pay-TV, cybersecurity, and IoT industries. Such experience extends beyond solution development through operational support and management of service-based solutions that are designed to scale. So, extending the same level of know-how deployed in pay-TV to home network security is a natural next step for NAGRA.

In bringing NAGRA Scout, the new home network security solution to market, the NAGRA team has been reviewing the natural behavior of consumers in relation to how they want to manage their digital lives.   

Designed to address the challenges of home network security, the NAGRA Scout solution provides smart technology within the broadband router that connects to a cloud-based platform.  At the consumer end, a simple app allows consumers to monitor the security of their IoT devices.

This approach means consumers feel secure in the knowledge that their ISP has a firm handle on threats to data, privacy, and identity theft. In return, operators are able to aggregate the threat level across their network – all the way to the consumer’s router - and learn how to prevent novel threats, originating from consumer devices, propagating through their network.  In addition, operators are able to then plan the future of their network in step with the devices being used by their consumers – ensuring they are able to offer complementary services that continue to provide value.

To learn more about NAGRA Scout, and how it can both protect and provide valuable insight of consumer device behavior, why not watch the video, take a read of our datasheet or request a demo to continue the conversation!