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Hopefully this question won't come across too closely to a which product is best as that is not my intention.

I am moving into a larger property and I would like to setup some home security now i'm not 100% sure on I should be aware of and how to possibly mitigate being broken into. I also do not know the area much at all, it appears to be a quiet English town.

My main concerns are physical security and security of my home network.

Thoughts on physical was to either just get an alarm or some kind of IP camera setup covering the front and rear of the property but after hearing some rather alarming news Nest camera hacks I do however have a few raspberry pi's that could be setup as PI ip camera. But I'm not sure if that would make it more or less secure. One consideration is the property has a shed which will probably contain some bikes and tools which I would like to secure which makes me lead toward camera's is having a set of camera's considered more secure? and if so, to what extent against what threat.

For home network security, I'm far more concerned the area generally has fairly tech savvy people due to lots of technical companies in the area. I've not moved in yet but I will probably just use whatever is supplied by the CSP with the nicest looking package. I'll then change the SSID and any passwords that came by default.

While I'm fairly technical I do not know that much about security and what I do know I can't seem to apply to this, as in how do I take what I think might be an issue and break it up into threats and actions so on. threat analysis I guess it would be called?

So after all that,

  • What threats should I be wary of concerning physical security of a home?
  • What threats are there to my home network?
  • What actions can I take to mitigate some of the threats
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What threats should I be wary of concerning physical security of a home?

Let's start by your use of a branded (or even worse a non-brand) "smart" camera. As you noted regarding NEST and other vendors (Ring), all of them work using their own cloud service. For you to get a push notification that something has moved in your garden, the camera reports to the cloud and the cloud pushed the message to you (among other things like save your recording etc.). By itself, if you are really wary for your privacy I would suggest you refrain from using those solutions. Regardless of whether they were breached or not, anyone with access to your cloud account (let it be an hacker, "the man" or the cloud provider) will be able to see the recordings (e.g. for Alexa, google assistant and Siri, all respected vendors disclosed that there are people listening to what you say in order to enhance their voice detection techniques).

If you decide to trust those vendors (which to be honest i would, for externally facing cameras), than the implementation is simple and straightforward.

If you decide to do that on your own (connecting a dumb camera into a raspberry Pi) than you will need to code your way to detection, notification and alerting (there are several open source projects that can help you). In my view that would be the most secure option as those cameras would not be connecting anywhere outside of your network and will not receive any communications from external locations so they would be easy to segment them and whitelist traffic based on your preference).

What threats are there to my home network?

That's a 10 page academic research paper grade question. But in short:

  • Wireless Network: If you expose your SSID (or even if you are not with the right tooling) people can identify your network and attempt to hack it. to reduce that likelihood, first hide your SSID (only people who know your SSID or use advanced sniffers will be able to detect it. Secondly, use a strong access password or a certificate to access the network.
  • Router Security: make sure you change the default username and password, and periodically check if there are firmware upgrades for your router. if you are still after better security, use the router provided by the ISP as a pure modem and buy a branded router with extra features (from cheap netgear routers to SMB grade checkpoint firewalls)
  • Firewall and other security features: make sure you enable all those features, prevent any inbound traffic in your router.
  • Create a guest wi-fi network for your visitors -> they shouldn't have access to your home network and they can be completely secluded.

Hope that would get you started in the right direction.

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