Three-quarters of Brits worry about risks from connected homes
Despite their potential to reduce bills and make life easier, 76 percent of British consumers are worried about the impact of smart technology and connected homes.
A study by price comparison site MoneySuperMarket polled more than 2000 people and reveals many are fearful of the smart homes concept, with unapproved data collection cited as the greatest worry.
Other concerns include the technology being hacked by criminals (51 percent), being made unusable by a virus (43 percent) and recording you without your knowledge (42 percent).
While 77 percent of Brits have heard of a 'connected' home, only six percent claim to know a lot about smart home technology. The most popular gadget already in use is a smart TV, with 30 percent of Brits now owning one, followed by a smart energy meter (16 percent).
There were some interesting responses when people were asked what smart home gadget they would like to see invented. Answers range from self-cleaning ovens (29 percent), self-emptying bins (11 percent) and self-pouring wine fridges (five percent), to smart dog walkers and self-emptying dishwashers. More outlandish suggestions included auto-spray devices that would deal with cold callers and robot dogs with the ability to do chores.
Kevin Pratt, consumer affairs expert at MoneySuperMarket says,
Smart technology promises to transform our homes by enhancing security, improving energy efficiency and generally making our domestic lives smoother and more efficient. However, many people are understandably anxious that the benefits will be countered by threats, such as hacking and loss of privacy.
It's up to the makers of smart devices and applications to reassure consumers that they are not putting themselves at risk. And it’s also vital that any cost savings that flow from adopting connected technology, such as reduced pay-outs for burglary claims, are passed on to customers in the form of lower home insurance premiums.
MoneySuperMarket has created a connected home hub to help people understand the facts about smart homes and see how they could benefit.