As so many of us continue to work remotely, our office and our home network are now one and the same. Working from home brings with it plenty of benefits, from flexibility to convenience. But it also brings with it newfound security issues concerning the sensitive data now finding a place on your network. Here at KDG, our IT support and cybersecurity team strives to bring you the latest updates on data security so you can better keep your data and employees safe. That’s why we wanted to bring your attention to Amazon Sidewalk.
What is Amazon Sidewalk?
Amazon Sidewalk is the newest feature included in recent releseases of Amazon Echo and Ring. Sidewalk will help create entire smart neighborhoods, making it easier for you to access your devices and make the most of their features. For example, if you lose Wi-Fi access to your Ring security camera, but your neighbor also has an Amazon device, you will be able to access your Ring via their network. Low-bandwidth signals can be passed for as much as half a mile. This means outdoor lights, garage openers, or even pet trackers made by Amazon will work even when they’re slightly out of reach of your home network’s signal.
However, as with anything, there’s a downside to this convenience.
The Security Dangers
Just as you can access your neighbor’s Wi-Fi, they can access yours. This opens the door for security vulnerabilities not yet thoroughly tested.
With Sidewalk you’re taking your network’s security out of your hands, allowing unknown devices a foothold into your network and potentially causing data intrusions or collection. With most employees still working from home, this means their personal data isn’t only at risk, but their sensitive company data is as well. Credit card info, bank statements, company communications, contracts and legal documents, social security numbers, and more could all be exposed or even monitored.
It’s important to note that Amazon does promise that all traffic is encrypted and secure. However, the experts on our IT team say that using this feature is an unnecessary risk, especially while we are working from home.
Turning Off Amazon Sidewalk
Amazon has already opted many Alexa users into this feature without their consent, another security concern. We at KDG highly recommend you OPT-OUT of this feature. Here’s how:
- Update the Alexa app to its latest version.
- Sign in to your Amazon account.
- Select More > Settings > Account Settings > Amazon Sidewalk.
- Once there, turn the slider to the “off” setting.
A few minutes is all it takes to keep your network safe.
Here for Your Data Security
Here at KDG, we make sure to always stay up to date on the latest security news and updates. We want you to be confident in the safety of your data and the future of your business.
If you have any questions or concerns about Amazon Sidewalk, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Whether you’re working in the office or working from home, we will do all that we can to keep your network safe.