Skip to comments.Buyers be aware of 'smart appliances'
Posted on 09/15/2013 5:37:37 PM PDT by rickmichaels
The devil is always in the detail.
So-called smart appliances are a popular feature in the modern home. Odds are your new electric kettle, dishwasher, dryer, microwave or even the toaster comes with a pre-installed microchip that enables its operation to be monitored by a third party.
All it needs is a compatible system of Wi-Fi technology to link the appliance to that separate party which is provided via the Hydro One technology.
Manufacturers are aware of the possibility this offers.
Here is a standard addition to any warranty to kitchen goods sold by the Whirlpool Corporation of America.
If you use, connect or register a Smart Appliance, we may collect information about you, including your contact information, information about your Smart Appliance, information from your use of SmartPhone Applications or other third party devices (such as smart meters), and information collected by the Smart Appliance Services website.
We may collect information from a variety of sources, including from you directly, from your Smart Appliance, from your use of the Smart Appliance Services, and from third party sources.
That makes it clear information can be collected. Will it be shared with others?
We may share certain information we collect from you (including Personal Information) with our brands and with third parties acting on our behalf.
We may use information we collect from you to provide you with the Smart Appliance Services, for troubleshooting and maintenance (including for warranty purposes), to communicate with you about your account or your appliance, to offer you products or services, and for other purposes.
Whirlpool submits that by the simple act of buying their appliances you, the consumer, sign away your rights to privacy.
Concerns over the technology are widespread in the U.S., Australia, New Zealand and Canada.
This was acknowledged by BC Hydro earlier this year when it stopped rollout of its smart meters after a consumer backlash.
The CEO of BC Hydro ordered crews to stop installation if account holders who said they opposed the devices were not home.
A Jan. 21 e-mail from Charles Reid to Energy Minister Rich Coleman said BC Hydro sent a letter to those who objected to having a smart meter.
If they responded with still saying no, we respected that, but of course are still trying to convince otherwise, Reid wrote.
For those that did not respond, we went to their home and if we made contact and they still said no, we respected that and did not install.
There is no such provision in Ontario for a similar opt-out measure.
Unless it knows my wifi router password, it’s not communicating anything back to the home office.
WIFI I protected......unless my passwords are hacked, my toaster can not watch me.
Actually I have other things to worry about rather my toaster spying on me or not.
I make it a point not to buy a toaster smarter than I am.
smart appliances also communicate through the electrical grid and are identified by that smart meter on your house and can be manipulated by the power company.
What would be the advantage for the consumer be of their dish washer connected to the internet? Let’s say there is a problem with operation, or sends a code to Maytag, then what? Couldn’t the code just flash a signal to the consumer so they can get the repair man out to fix it?
Think about how baby monitors communicate. If an appliance is “smart”, it doesn’t need wifi, or ethernet. It can communicate directly with the electric meter via the power lines.
Think the line to your password; is now considered ‘easy access’ category. If they want it; they will have; and probably do; already.
I will not ever need a toaster that can communicate other than have a distinctive pop-up sound when the toast is done.
You still haven't told us if you actually have one. [grin]
and I most definitely do not want my toaster talking to my fridge behind my back..
I suspected as much when I noticed by dishwasher following me around the house. Every time I stopped and looked at it, though, it turned a different direction and pretended to be working. I thought maybe I was just paranoid.
Well, if they do maybe they can also make my toaster work better.......I swear you could add three rooms to your house before the damned thing could make toast.
>>and I most definitely do not want my toaster talking to my fridge behind my back.
Now that’s funny! :-)
I'd be more worried about the toaster porn that it was surfing than I would be about the gossip that it's sharing with your fridge.
They don't call them 'pop tarts' for nothing.
>> “Unless it knows my wifi router password, its not communicating anything back to the home office.” <<
Sorry, but that depends on how old your router is. If you bought it within the last seven years, it has federally mandated “back doors.”
(It rose to public consciousness - the meaning of 'is' - and now; we are not able to define,that which IS our 'OWN'. Clearly depends on 'whose' definition we adhere to.)
Why not, just give it all, to these Lefties. . .it is what made Nazi Germany; and empowered Stalin; and Mao; dictators Et Al. Absolute power; the 'allowance' of absolute power (though certainly resisted by many; if not enough; or by those, too late smart. . .) is what it what it is.. and it is what the Left wants. Their 'future' - their livlihood; depends on it. Always. . .
I scared away the guy that came to put in a water dept. “smart meter” at our house this spring. I happened to have bronchitis at the time and worked up a crazy coughing fit while telling the fellow that my Dr. warned that I couldn’t have such a device in my home. I was hacking and wheezing and saying all the while that I had been warned the thing would interfere with my “medical devices”.
I have no medical devices. Yet.
Anyway he flew to the front door and stumbled all over his equipment trying to get away from the flu bug he thought I had. I kept telling him he couldn’t catch what I had. He looked at me like I was a potential murderer. It was funny.
A different guy showed up the next time, and told me that the first one had CUT THE LINE TO THE EXISTING METER on the outside of the house. He said that’s what they were doing, then they call and say there is a problem with your meter and it needs to be changed. That’s how they are doing it around here.
Sneak up to your house, cut your line, tell you it’s the meter and they have to “estimate” your bill until the thing is “fixed”. Then the guy shows up and installs the smart meter without telling you that’s what he’s doing. Guy #2 fixed the cut wire and started up my old meter.
I see a potential for marketing “dumb” appliances. Think of the sales slogans for such!
Can we imagine power so ‘inbedded’; that ‘we’ may have to beg for toast. . .Can see an all to real horror story - from Hollywood (post their enlightenment) - unfolding; whereby citizens; beg; beg; beg. . .for life; and the ‘switch’;the Government connection - that allows it; and then waits to see; if they will; in fact; turn it on.
My router is older than that and I don’t have any smart appliances. If one of them dies and I have to get a new one of something, it could communicate but I don’t have a smart meter, either, so maybe no info. can be communicated from my house yet.
If you have a smart meter, the power company can cut it off or let it run for certain hours and cut it off - do anything they want with your power and control any smart appliance plugged into that power source.
WE ARE LIVING IN THE BOOK/FILM 1984.
your toaster knows the exact moment to POP UP....do you??
plug it in....
Mine too, until I found the "toast" button on the front.
It fooled me because when I pushed down the bread, a light came on, the heaters came on, the toaster got hot, and, eventually, after a long time, I got toast. So, being completely stupid, I figured that the toaster was toasting.
I was a fool.
No, the way my toaster was designed, after all that stuf starts, then I have to pick one of four almost identical buttons with little symbols on them to actually start toasting the bread so as to finish the toasting within, say, a week.
That's right, unbenownst to me, I had actually bought a Crock-Toaster. A toaster designed to be started on your way out the door in the morning, so that when you get home at night - ding! - you have fresh, hot toast ready for you.
crock toaster hahahahah
My toaster was given to me and my wife as a wedding present, 50 years ago.
Perhaps a photo? Made in Germany or England? Drop sides?
Or. . .you prefer toast made in your oven; and under broiler? (And your toaster is 'counter art'?)
Whatever; beginning to long for the 'good old days';when 'ever' they were.
What’s next - condoms with RFID chips?
Hmm, that could be interesting...
Are we all gonna die?
Are we all gonna die?
= = = = = = = = = =
Sooner or later.
I read somewhere that all people that ate beans during the Civil War died.
So I guess NOT eating beans may prolong one’s life????
I’m happy that all of my appliances are dumb, as is the meter on my house.
Now that's hawt...
That’s cute and funny or he doesn’t want to get peanut butter on his book.
Wouldn’t it be easy enough to assign IP addresses to the appliances and block those IP addresses from accessing the internet?
not to mention we have Ethernet over Power Lines already, so if you plug it in and you are on the grid, you are OWNED.
Smart meters can be electonically jammed with readily available devices if they are “plug-in” appliances; not so for air conditioners and furnaces.
Appliances these days are complete junk. A washer from just a few years ago might have a life expectancy of 15 to 20 years. Our washer is 20 years old and I plan to have it repaired before I will buy a new one.
Remember the Maytag advertisement. What a big lie. Maytag is crap.
Sorry to rant. American consumers are getting screwed. Plus all of the old POS appliances end up in a junk yard or the land fill. So much for being environmentally friendly, ie, green. Green means less robust and heavy duty and more likely to fall apart.
I think I read about the “medical device/equipment” dodge here on FreeRe, so I was ready with a plan when the guy showed up.
Our town never even mentioned this - unless it was hidden in one of those yearly report things they mass mail. But I was suspicious, so when the first guy showed up I asked a few questions while I got my chest to rattling, when he wouldn’t give me a straight answer, I progressed to deep juicy coughs. I asked again and he finally muttered something about the readout being digital. Then I commenced to gasping and gagging and man, that guy couldn’t move towards the door fast enough. When I called the office to reschedule, I did my routine and alternated hacking up hairballs with repeating dire “warnings” from my Dr.s about my medical devices being adversely affected by THOSE meters.
My husband can’t believe the stuff I do, LOL. But hey! My house, my money, and if I don’t want to have my utilities spy on me then I’ll do what it takes.
When is enough enough? Our cars have chips, utility meters spy, computers spy on us, cell phones are tracked, credit cards are tracked and analyzed, whatever we do at work is tracked. Paper money has magnetic strips which can be pinged. What in hell are they missing? It’s like a nutball stalker scenario.
The appliance has to be able to talk with your router first and that is all set up from the router.
On the other hand, if you set it up, then it is possible for it to communicated with the factory.
Seems like a waste of $ IMO. Why not put the money into a more reliable longer lasting appliance. Basic functionality and reliability first, expensive, whizzy features a distant second.
Also, IP over the power line has limited range and is not practical.
Power companies can manage only an aggregate few hundred bits/second data rate over several miles; not much to serve a whole neighborhood's data snooping needs, eh?
You mean to tell me my newly purchased hair dryer gives information to the NSA!!??? WTH. Guys at NSA, get a live, cause mine will bore you to tears.
I believe you're talking about backdoor access from the WAN side; not the WIFI side.
Current Wifi routers have some universal passwords that you cannot defeat.
Google has them, as does the FBI.
Haa, we’ve discovered “green” is the code word for “it doesn’t work”.