IoT encompasses any device that is able to connect with the internet and transmit data. Examples are CCTV cameras, cars, biometric readers, voice-activated assistants like Alexa & so many others.
They are different from laptops, computers, and smartphones in the sense that they generally have a limited user interface and serves to measure and relay data rather than serve as a direct interface to the internet. All the data can be accessed anywhere in the world, provided the device is connected to the internet.
IoT is currently in the middle of an upward movement with multiple industries incorporating IoT into their industries with no signs of slowing down.
IoT & Its Security!
Cybersecurity for IoT is concerned with safeguarding connected devices and networks. Devices connected to the internet are very vulnerable if they are not properly protected.
IoT security gained importance after a number of high-profile incidents where one IoT device was used to infiltrate and attack the larger network. Cybersecurity measures are necessary to ensure the safety of networks with connected devices.
With new products coming out, security is given a lower priority. The idea of networking appliances and other objects is relatively new, security hasn’t been considered top priority during a product design phase. Because IoT is a relatively new technology in the market, many product manufacturers are more interested in creating new products and getting them to the market quickly, rather than taking the necessary steps to secure them from start.
Security Challenges for IoT
A major concern regarding IoT security is the use of default passwords. Such passwords can lead to security breaches and even when passwords are strong, they aren’t powerful enough to prevent infiltration.
Another challenge is that IoT devices are resource-constrained and do not contain the computational resources necessary to implement strong security. They therefore cannot offer advanced security features. These devices set up to be forgotten where they hardly ever receive security updates or patches.
Building security from the start can be costly, slow down development, and cause the device not to function as it should.
Many businesses are unaware of the vulnerabilities that IoT presents and focused on cost savings and convenience that IoT provides.
Gartner predicts that by 2020, over 25% of enterprise attacks will involve IoT.
With stakes higher for industrial IoT systems, connected IoT sensors and devices can significantly increase the risks for organizations.
Even though some pieces of equipment may continue to operate unattended, not subject to constant monitoring they do need to be secured. Apart from securing IoT devices, companies also need to make sure that their networks are secure. Strong user authentication measures can ensure that only authorized people can gain access to the network.
How You Can Achieve Security for IoT?
The way you protect your network varies from network to network depending on specific IoT applications and your place in the IoT ecosystem. Some of them are as follows:
Incorporating security at the design phase- enabling security is critical
- Developers require credentials to be updated by a user before the device functions.
- Consumers must be educated about IoT devices and how to stay secure by updating default credentials and updating software.
- Integrating teams like programming and security teams during the development phase.
- Use of security gateways as an intermediary between IoT devices and the network.
- Working in network security and network access control.
- Providing every device with a unique identity is crucial to understand the device and how it interacts with other devices.
IoT has now evolved into a huge industry. But with it comes the security issues and the considerations that manufacturers need to understand and use this technology effectively.
Recent IoT Attack on IoT Devices
The Mirai botnet attack of 2016 that compromised thousands of IoT devices can’t be forgotten. Unprotected IoT devices have the potential to help fund cybercrime because of its open nature of connectivity and data sharing property.
IoT devices lack standard security as well as little to no update feature is available on these devices, hence the potential for devices to be sent out in the market with the security flaw intact.
IoT is an innovative new technology that helps people as well as businesses to manage and learn about their environments. With is rapid development and deployment there is the increased concern regarding security, a concern that if not dealt with would lead to immense harm and cybercrime. There is a need for all the organizations that have implemented this technology to review it and need to work on areas of potential security breaches and data leaks. We need to stay updated with all the latest IoT trends and try to understand the system.