How to Protect and Secure Your Smart TV

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What Is a Smart TV and What Are the Privacy and Security Risks?

By Click&Clean - Friday, 11 October 2019. In a nutshell, a smart TV is any TV with an operating system or platform that can be connected to the internet via wired Ethernet and/or built-in Wi-Fi.

Smart TVs allow you to stream media content from network-based services like Netflix, Pandora, Hulu, YouTube, .etc, install apps, browse the web, play games, and access online music channels. They may also include features such as voice-recognition virtual assistant services and webcams.

How to Protect and 
Secure Your Smart TV

Like all Internet-connected devices, smart TVs can present various privacy and security threats, including the risk of recording your conversation, monitoring your habits and your usage history, and exploiting security vulnerabilities that could allow cybercriminals to gain control of your device.

Many people still do not know about the many attack methods that exist through their smart TVs. So, if you are considering buying a smart TV or you already have one, here are some helpful tips on how to protect yourself against privacy and security risks.

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Privacy and Security Tips for Your Smart TV

1. Keep Your TV's Firmware and Apps Updated

Malicious users are always looking for vulnerabilities through which they can attack your device, computer or network. Therefore, like your computer or smartphone, your smart TV and installed applications should be updated regularly to avoid any vulnerabilities.

2. Review Your Smart TV Privacy Settings

When setting up your smart TV, it is tempting to let it run according to its default settings, but this should not be the case when it comes to your privacy. Select the most restrictive options to protect your TV and remember that the better you know and understand what your TV offers, the more you can prevent various privacy threats.

3. Be Careful When Downloading Apps

The best way to avoid malicious and potentially unwanted applications is to install apps directly from the App Store or Google Play. Before doing so, check the name of the app author and the number of installations, and if in doubt, do not rush to install such an application.

4. Cover Your TV's Camera and Turn Off Microphone

If your smart TV has a built-in webcam, always cover the lens with opaque tape or a sticky note when not in use. If you don't plan to use any voice recognition features, turn off the microphone in the TV settings, or at least review the microphone privacy settings to restrict access to it.

5. Turn Off the Internet Connection

Disconnect your smart TV from Wi-Fi or the Internet when you are not using the TV. This limits data breach and any other Internet-related risks.

6. Limit the Use of External Drives

It's a known fact that most malware and viruses are transmitted through external drives. To keep your smart TV from being infected and compromised, it is better to use one special flash drive, such as a USB stick, that you can always scan and clean.

7. Don't Do Anything Extra via Your TV

Remember that although your smart TV allows you to do many things such as searching for movies, videos, photos and other content on the Internet, you should not carry out activities that involve sensitive information on your TV, such as making purchases or logging in to your bank account. For your privacy and security, do this on your personal devices, such as your PC.

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