Google’s Nest Recall Notice Reveals 440,000 Faulty Fire Alarms

Nest, the connected home devices manufacturer recently bought by Google, is shipping a software fix for its Protect Smoke + CO alarms, as a report indicated as many as 440,000 were affected by a problem in the devices.

The company warned in April the intelligent fire alarms and CO2 detectors could be accidentally disabled given a “unique combination of circumstances”.

Nest sales revealed by US government?

As noted in an advisory on the  US Consumer Product Safety Commission website yesterday, which effectively revealed how many of the devices had been sold in America, the problem lay in the Nest Wave feature, which allows users to silence some alerts or cancel a manual test by waving an arm near the device.

The update, as announced in April, simply disables that feature and is ready for customers to enact now. There have been no reports of incidents, injuries or property damage.

“The repair is an automatic electronic update that disables the Nest Wave feature and is delivered automatically to devices connected wirelessly to the Internet and linked to a Nest account,” the US government body recommended.

“Consumers who have not connected their Nest Protect devices to their wireless network and linked them to a Nest account should immediately do so. The devices will automatically receive the update that disables the Nest Wave feature.

“Customers should confirm that their devices have been updated by going to Nest Sense on their Nest account mobile or web application and ensuring that the button for Nest Wave is off and grayed out.”

At the time of the initial disclosure, Nest CEO Tony Fadell admitted the problem might take three months to resolve.

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Thomas Brewster

Tom Brewster is TechWeek Europe's Security Correspondent. He has also been named BT Information Security Journalist of the Year in 2012 and 2013.

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