I’m way past my college days – and thankful for it – but sometimes I think about how I would do it all differently if I had today’s technology. Back when I went to college, we barely even had cell phones – let alone cell phones that hosted games that caused a frenzy (I’m looking at you Pokemon Go). We didn’t have social media networks to connect with people (or to help us with hookups), and instant world knowledge was not a thing. We didn’t have any of those things because the technology hadn’t been invented yet. Nowadays, that technology, and so, so much more than we ever could have imagined, is at our fingertips, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
As some of my family members are getting ready to go off to college, their parents are of course reaching out to Cool Jeff, as I’m known to my family, to ask how they can use technology to help keep their kids safe during their college days. So, here’s how I would use today’s technology to make sure that I was living securely in any college situation – on campus and off campus.
The FIRST thing I would do is put motion sensors on my valuables. If I was in a dorm room, I’d add sensors to any dresser drawers that I had, along with my laptop and any storage bins that I have. The sensors would alert me on my cell phone or tablet if anyone accesses my personal stuff. I’d also put one on my laptop. If I had an off campus living situation, I’d definitely be adding one to my bedroom door, too.
When most people think of security cameras, they think about these bulky units that require complicated wiring. That’s just not the truth anymore. There are all kinds of cameras that are small, require no wiring, and stream surveillance straight to a cloud account. These cameras allow the owner to access the live stream right from their cell phones or tablets. While I don’t recommend pointing the camera at your roommate’s bed, it might come in handy when monitoring what little personal space you have in college. If you think your roommate is stealing from you, you can set up a discreet camera – they even have cameras that appear to be something else – and check in to see if you need to file a complaint about them.
While a video doorbell might not be the best thing if you’re living in a dorm – since some drunk student might come along and steal it – it’s something to consider, and a no-brainer if you are living off-campus. When you’re living with roommates, there could be a lot of traffic coming to your house – and a lot of people you don’t know. With a video doorbell, you can monitor who is coming and going even when you’re in class or studying at the library.
What smart, connected security products would you recommend to someone going off to college?
Photo by: eflon