Wednesday, September 26, 2018

How to Secure Your Smart Home with Alexa

With Alexa receiving new updates, Amazon has made it clear that security is their primary concerns. Apart from the brand new features to attract more customers, the cornerstone of Amazon’s surprise event continued to be ensuring safety for smart homes. In the new updates, the following are some of the steps through which Alexa can secure your smart home:
1- Alexa Guard
Alexa Guard is a feature which may extend the scope of Echo devices into security. Through these Echo devices, Alexa can be on the lookout for sounds that indicate danger of some kind. They could be the blaring or an alarm or the crashing of glass. If Alexa detects suspicious noises, she will trigger an emergency alert on your mobile device. Along with the alert, you will also receive a sound clip of the suspicious noise.
If you have prescribed to some security services like ADT or Ring, then you will have the option to forward these alerts to these monitory authorities. Thus, they can send a response team from their dispatch centre. You can trigger Alexa Guard through commands such as “Alexa, I am leaving.”
2- Alexa Hunches
While companies are working hard to make digital assistants smarter in holding conversations, they are also building AIs to become more human-like. Alexa Hunches is Amazon’s step in this direction. Alexa Hunches are along the lines of human gut instincts. Alexa may help you highlight things that may not feel just quite right or if you seem to be forgetting something. So, suppose you are heading out and have forgotten to switch off the lights, Alexa will either remind you to do it or carry out the action herself.
3- Alexa Doorbell Cam
Previously, you could watch the video live stream fed from the door cameras by saying “Alexa, show the front door live feed.” However, this feature lacked the ability to record these videos or keep a track of them.
Security providers such as Arlo, August, and Ring have partnered with Amazon to present Alexa-enabled security cameras to their customers. Additionally, Amazon itself has its indigenous indoor security camera such as Cloud Cam. These security cameras come equipped with Cameras Recap API, which records video stream from these security cameras.
You can view these recorded clips with commands such as “Alexa, show me the events that took place at the back door.” You can even check out who is standing at your door by asking Alexa to talk to the back/front door camera. The Alexa Doorbell Cam feature is available on Amazon Echo Show, Fire TV, Fire tablet, and the Echo Spot.
4- Away Lighting
When you are away from home, you are constantly wracked with worry about being burgled. With Alexa’s Away Lighting you no longer have to spend the time being tensed. Away Lighting is a feature of Alexa Guard, which periodically turns on and turns off the various smart bulbs fitted around your house. This action of turning on and off the lights is done in a natural manner. Therefore, to any casual observer it may simply appear as if your house is occupied.
5- Doorbell Chime
In addition to recording the video fed from the security cameras located at your doors, the doorbell chime feature is a new addition to bolster security. If someone rings your doorbell, all your Echo devices will emit a chime to notify the ringing of the doorbell.
With these new features, Alexa can make your house safer thereby unloading you off the psychological burden of worrying about security. These updates will definitely boost safety and open new avenues for artificial intelligence in home security.

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Karen Minton is a Microsoft Office expert and has been working in the technical industry since 2002. As a technical expert, Karen has written technical blogs, manuals, white papers, and reviews for many websites such as


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