Data collected by smart appliances "is not safe if it's sent off to the cloud," said Michael Patterson, CEO of Plixer. Add artificial intelligence, large data algorithms and machine learning into the mix, along with the bad guys can start "massive hyperfocused campaigns against specific high-value sensitive targets," he pointed out. "Adversaries can craft personalized social engineering lures related to targets' browsing patterns, interests, livelihood and vices, by way of example, and thus skip the cybersecurity and cyber-hygiene reflexes that typically thwart 86 percent of societal engineering applications." "The widespread collection, insecure storage, negligent exchange, and irresponsible usage of consumer metadata poses a direct and hyper-evolving threat to consumers, government officials, and critical infrastructure owners and operators," he told TechNewsWorld. Both the Roomba robots and iRobot's network architecture "are continually reviewed by multiple third-party security agencies," Angle pointed out. IRobot addresses customer IoT "with the fundamental principles of security: secure data at rest, secure data in transit, secure execution, and secure updates," he explained. Smart home appliances and gadgets store the data they gather in the cloud, which is not inviolate. The Swedish government recently faced an upheaval following the discovery that all Swedish citizens' private data were leaked after it was transferred to a cloud operate by IBM, a company. The government replaced two of its own ministers in an attempt to quell the uproar. The Threat to Security and Privacy "The company will never violate customer trust by selling or misusing customer-related data, including data collected by our connected products," Angle emphasized. Data collection is meant to give an additional revenue stream for your maker or service provider, in addition to improve the user's experience, stated Blake Kozak, chief analyst at IHS Markit. Reaping the Rewards It signifies a danger to national safety and the ethics of democratic institutions, Scott warned. The recent rumor which iRobot had engaged in discussions with Apple, Amazon and Google parent Alphabet to market the data its Roomba vacuum cleaner gathers caused privacy concerns. This trend could lead to serious threats to consumers' privacy and security. Hackers have obtained baby monitors, for instance. The United States National Security Agency has made no bones about its openness to exploit on the data made available from appliances and the Internet of Things. Additionally, producers of smart devices who gather data "don't act on the data, and even more suggest they ... aggregate it," he noted. "The ease with which an attacker can harvest and collect demographic and psychographic data on targets is astounding," said James Scott, senior fellow at the Institute for Critical Infrastructure Technology. However, iRobot "has not had any conversations with other companies about selling data," said Colin Angle, the provider's CEO. Malware diagnostic technologies from security providers "are not a surefire defense against targeted attacks," he told TechNewsWorld. "Nothing short of unplugging from the Internet can keep your data safe." "iRobot is committed to the security of our customers' data, which we take very seriously," he said. "We build security directly into the product development process from the start, in the time of ideation." That is why the rumor that iRobot was discussing sale of the information to a third party alarmed consumer privacy advocates. However, from discussions with content (read full article) device makers and cybersecurity experts, "data collected by smart home devices will not be available to just any third party," IHS Markit's Kozak told TechNewsWorld. Data collection is trivial, Kozak pointed out. Reward cards, fitness smartphones collect user data and trackers. Amazon's Echo and also Google's Home voice-activated speakers monitor and collect information about users via various home appliances and other products, as do manufacturers of TVs. Consumers who wish to maintain their personally identifiable data secure shouldn't invest in appliances which are Internet-capable, Patterson cautioned. "No IoT device is safe from a data compromise." Right now, anyone can gather an quantity of data on nearly anyone just by scouring search engines on the Web. Insert in information accumulated other gadgets and by smart house appliances, and data on customers' electricity consumption patterns gathered by smart meters, and it's possible to get a very granular picture of what's going on in someone's home. Roomba maps houses -- that the dimensions between furniture and other objects will be beneficial to some of the players fighting to control the home.