In Review

Dojo Smart-Home Gizmo on Sale in US – What it Means for Home Security

June 13th, 2017

Dojo’s smart-home gizmo, an Internet of Things device aimed to address the privacy concerns of those with home automation devices, is finally up for sale in the United States.

This comes after a few years of development. The product has been in works since 2014, and the physical device was first shown for pre-orders in 2015. The product has finally been brought to life thanks to the acquisition of Dojo Labs by the Israeli startup, BullGuard.

The original date for the Gizmo was March of 2016, but the date was not reached. After Dojo Labs was acquired by BullGuard, the focus immediately became to get the Dojo to market. Now, after nine months, the Dojo is shipping, but only in the United States.

How Does the Device Work?

Dojo Gizmo works by plugging its dock into a WiFi router, which will operate as a firewall between connected devices and potential threats. The pebble-shaped piece of hardware is what users will recognize as the main component of the system, and shaped like a digital rock, it will show security updates of suspicious activity.

The device will shine a yellow light for suspicious activity, a red light for immediate threats, and a green light if everything is OK. Push alert notifications will also be sent to users to alert of suspicious activity.

This Dojo Gizmo works by continuously monitoring activity on WiFi networks and throughout home automated products. It does so through machine learning and pattern matching to understand what type of activity in the home is normal, and what type of activity is a threat. The idea is that this device will monitor all activity on automation networks to prevent hacking.

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The idea behind the Dojo is that the device almost works as anti-virus protection for an entire WiFi network. The device works like an IoT immunization to monitor activity on devices and flag potential threats.

Even better, affected devices can automatically be disconnected to keep malware from leaching data or hacking into other devices. Everything is controlled via a smart-home application, which allows users to remotely control or disconnect devices, and sends push alert notifications.

Pricing and Practicality

The Dojo is priced at $199, and this price tag includes the first 12-months of service. Once this first-year service charge is dropped, the Dojo clocks in at $99 per year and $9.99 a month.

Since the device is yet to be seen in application, everything up to this point is speculation. There has been plenty of concern for homeowners regarding the privacy of their smart devices and home automated systems, and the need for privacy and protection is on the forefront of the minds of both customers and manufacturers.

This Dojo tool seems to be in the right step to help alleviate privacy concerns, though users will still be entrusting a company—Dojo in this instance—with access to their products and their data. Only time will tell how successful Dojo is, or if they are able to thwart all hacking and vulnerabilities in systems, but this device seems to be a step in the right direction.

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