UK privacy regulator issues safety guidelines for smart toys and devices


Recognising that many parents will be considering purchasing connected toys and other devices for their children, for Christmas 2017 the UK's Information Commissioner's Office issued a list of 12 guidelines for assessing products before purchasing. These include: research the product's security before buying; watch out for online shopping fraud; plan ahead to study the product's security and privacy options; change default user names and passwords; ensure your home router is security; use two-factor authentication wherever it's available; turn off remote viewing for web cameras unless you intend to use it; immediately change default GPS settings and location tracking and set strong, unique passwords; secure Bluetooth connections; discuss online safety and privacy with children; and send a message to retailers by not buying toys that raise questions about whether children's personal information will be kept safe. The ICO continues to work with manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers to encourage security by design through its Secure by Default project.

Writer: Steve Wood
Publication: ICO blog
Publication date: 2017-11-24


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