A new ‘smart lock’ promises to let homeowners do away with keys entirely - and open their front doors with a ‘secret knock’.
An accelerometer inside the £60 Sesame device ‘listens’ for a set knock pattern on users’ front doors - then opens up the dead bolt.
Users can also open the door by doing the same knock on the surface of their smartphone.
The makers are aware some users may find this a trifle alarming, so the lock (which attaches to any make of deadbolt) can also be set to open after a signal from a smartphone app.
Once paired with a smartphone, Sesame can ‘recognise’ a device and open up in under a second, its makers claim.
The app also stores a record of which users have come and gone - and you can check whether your door is locked via the internet.
The unit, which sticks to deadbolts using strong 3M adhesive, is connected to the internet via your home Wi-Fi router.
Many connected devices need to be hooked up to a central wireless hub and if a hacker is able to gain access to it, they could by extension reach any of your connected devices. Recent reports showed how a Russian website was streaming footage from hacked web cams and baby monitors from all over the world.
A threat researcher from Security software firm Symantec, Candid Wueest, explains in a blog post:
"While the explosion of internet-enabled devices, known as the Internet of Things (IoT), holds exciting possibilities for home automation, it also presents some serious security challenges and home users need to be aware that it isn’t just their PCs or smartphones that could be compromised by attackers."
He goes on to offer some basic pointers to consider when installing smart home devices:
Only enable remote administration from the internet if you really need it
Set a strong password for the devices where possible
Use strong passwords and WP2 encryption to protect your Wi-Fi network
Use trusted smart home brands from companies that invest in security