As modern home appliances are increasingly linked to the Internet, the possibility of savvy hackers breaking into your virtual home and stealing your identity, bank and credit card information and any other personal information they can use, is on the rise too, experts warned.

Unlike yester years, when crooks broke into houses through doors or windows to steal valuables, a vicious hacker can now make their way into your home through your stainless steel refrigerator or the big screen TV in the living room. According to experts, the problem is that the pace at which technology, that makes people’s homes smarter, has advanced is much faster that the security measures needed to make it safe, reported Fox News.

Chris Roberts of the Colorado-based One World Labs, a security intelligence firm that identifies risks before they’re exploited, noted that it has been well-documented that the ‘Internet of Things’ is being developed rapidly without appropriate considerations for all the security challenges posed by it.

David Knight, general manager of Proofpoint’s Information Security division, said that many of these appliances are “poorly protected” at best and consumers have no ways of detecting or fixing breaches when they do occur.

Roberts said that by 2020, there will be between 26 and 30 billion devices connected to the Internet but added that keeping them safe would call for software upgrades and better consumer education.