We sat down with Kabir Maiga, Systems Architect at PassiveBolt, who reviews Internet of Things devices for Security Baron to ensure their technical accuracy as part of our Expert Network.
How is the Shepherd lock different from the smart locks currently on the market?
Our Shepherd Lock keyless entry technology solution allows you to lock and unlock your home with a simple touch, with no fingerprints needed and without changing your existing lock hardware. Designed with safety as a top priority, Shepherd Lock is the first smart lock that uses touch sensing and artificial intelligence to actively monitor your lock, around the clock, to detect and thwart lock picking or tampering.
Our product is differentiated with several patented technologies. Here is a list of some of our unique and patented features:
- Using Legacy Locks for Touch: Utilizes the mounting screws as a gateway to monitor the existing lock hardware and detect touch.
- Lock Monitoring: Enhances security of the lock through active monitoring. Our algorithm uses a combination of sensors and machine learning to detect threats and notify the homeowner.
- Lock Disabling: Renders the lock inoperable by disabling the deadbolt mechanism. This gives to homeowner the power to actively respond to threats by deciding to disable the locks in response to detected threats or for enhancing security.
- Intelligent Door Status: Determines when the door is opened/closed without the need for external hardware. Current state of the art is to screw in a magnet and a door sensor which adds cost and is invasive.
What smart locks other than yours would you recommend and why?
Shepherd Lock aside, smart locks currently deliver the following basic value: convenience in the form of app based features. As such, the most important criteria for evaluating existing locks are the quality of the Bluetooth connection, responsiveness of the actuator system, and the quality of the app’s user experience. On this basis, August and Yale are superior to the other products. However, both August and Yale products lack in terms of security and user experience (at the lock level as opposed to the app). Shepherd Lock delivers both.
What should people look for in a smart lock?
A good smart lock is one that best addresses use cases around convenience and security in a robust and repeatable fashion. A bluetooth connection and an app are now standard. A superior product needs to be well differentiated beyond those two points.
You designed smart security sensors at Continental. What did that teach you about home security that you didn’t know before?
The most striking difference when compared to Automotive are the standards. Automotive standards are incredibly high and stringent. It is shocking to see the low standards to which most smart lock devices are tested against. This leads to significant failure rates for the industry. We are proud to bring automotive grade standards to this space in order to increase system robustnesses and repeatability.
What’s one thing you wish people knew about Internet of Things devices?
It is important for consumers to understand that the true potential of IoT can only be realized when data is collected and user experience is personalized. Privacy, as defined at the turn of the century, is long dead. Resisting IoT devices on that basis is fruitless. I do hope however that privacy will be redefined in the near future, and legislated if necessary, to control for responsible usage of data.