Internet-connected home devices that are marketed as the newest conveniences are also being used to harass, monitor and control. Abusers — using apps on their smartphones, which are connected to the internet-enabled devices — would remotely control everyday objects in the home, sometimes to watch and listen, other times to scare or show power. Victims feel like they are loosing their home.
The gadgets can be disabled through reset buttons and changing a home’s Wi-Fi password, but their makers said there was no catchall fix. Making it easy for people to switch who controls the account of a smart home product can inadvertently also make access to the systems easier for criminal hackers.