If you believe that the bad guy will have to physically break into your home to steal from you, well you likely need to think again. For each device you connect to the Internet, the more potential information thieves will be able to access and gather about you – such as your credit card information, bank account numbers and Social Security numbers. Hackers

This is why more and more cyber criminals have turned their attention to hacking into common household items, which includes baby monitors, thermostats, TVs and even refrigerators to crack your entire home network and gain access to your personal information.

While a quality home security system is one of the best ways to protect your home and family from physical burglars, the tips here will also help you keep cyber criminals at bay.

•  Change all the default passwords. Keeping the factory-set passwords and usernames means that you are extremely vulnerable to hackers. Many manufacturers use the same passwords for all their products, which hackers can use to gain access to your network.

•  Install software updates. Hackers can also gain entrance to your home network with the software that is running on your connected devices. This means you need to update the software when prompted to, by the product manufacturer.

•  Location considerations. It is essential that you don’t place your connected devices in areas where they could capture personal information, such as video and pictures.

Keeping your home hack-proof is not difficult, but it will require a bit of time and effort. In the long run, this will be well-worth it.