The recent push for enterprises to deploy private 5G networks has mainly been connected to speed and how much more efficiently any wireless devices on the network will operate. However, there’s another big benefit for businesses using their own wireless network: Security.
A recent warning was sent to St. Joseph, Missouri, residents who use wireless security systems such as Ring to protect their homes, Yahoo News and the St. Joseph News-Press reports. These systems help deter thieves from stealing packages off of doorsteps, but now there have been reports of hours of missing footage when the robberies occur. The missing footage is the result of jammers, illegal devices that can block wireless signals with radio wave frequencies.
These home security systems typically operate on Wi-Fi, leaving them more vulnerable to hackers. While home residents might not have the funds to deploy a private 5G network, this jammer situation is a good reason why businesses that currently lean on Wi-Fi should consider an upgrade. If everyday hackers can interfere with a wireless security camera that’s on Wi-Fi, they can likely gain control of other devices too, such as door locks, thermostat systems and lighting.
People often use Wi-Fi for their wireless security cameras because it’s convenient, but not necessarily more secure and criminals know this, Nick Smith, owner of Superior Fire & Security, told the St. Joseph News-Press. It’s easier to disrupt Wi-Fi and for hackers to take what they’re looking for undetected.
“People want doorbell cameras and stuff like that, which we do that stuff, but that’s more of a convenient item, I think,” he said. “Wi-Fi is so unreliable and if your Wi-Fi isn’t working well in your home then that’s going to definitely impact how your security cameras are running.”
Jamming devices also come in a variety of sizes and power levels. Some are powerful enough to disrupt an entire street’s wireless security. That’s part of the reason that wireless systems will only catch clips, according to Smith.
Private wireless networks can be critical in maintaining CRE security
Hackers’ ability to interfere with a Wi-Fi network, and the Internet-based devices on it, are major reasons for CRE owners to deploy the most secure wireless network possible. It’s not the only reason, however. As buildings become smarter, they’re able to collect more data. This includes how many people come into and out of a building and as well as any personal information visitors might need to provide when they check in.
There are also stores like Amazon Go where a shopper scans an app when they enter, pick out their items and their Amazon account that’s linked to the app is billed. All of the data that these buildings collect could be vulnerable to hackers if it isn’t being transferred on a secure network.
So, while Wi-Fi might be less expensive and even more convenient in some cases, CRE owners would find themselves in a more enviable position if they deployed a private wireless network that would have a better chance of keeping their building’s data, as well as their tenants’ and customers’ data, out of the wrong hands.