Security and the Internet of Things

Security and the Internet of Things


CyNexLink-internet-of-things

CyNexLink Blog   •   December 26, 2017

 

The Internet of Things is at the forefront of the technological revolution. The term describes the connectivity of anything with an on or off switch, including cellphones, headphones, coffee makers, lamps and refrigerators.

Although the institution has many benefits for businesses, there are security risks associated with the technology.

A 2015 survey conducted by McKinsey Global Institute along with the Global Semiconductor Alliance showed that weak security is the most important issue to respondents. McKinsey and Global administered another survey in 2016, which similarly showed a similar conclusion from respondents.

Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats earlier this year warned of the dangers of smart device security as part of the Internet of Things.

“In the future, state and non-state actors will likely use Internet of Things devices to support intelligence operations or domestic security or to access or attack targeted computer networks,” Coats said in a report.

Though the compromising of national security doesn’t necessarily directly translate to business, it’s not difficult to see that if the security of the country can be compromised from Internet of Things technology, then a business can fall prey to hackers as well.

Cyber criminals have already caused problems for companies by infiltrating devices connected to the Internet of Things.

The 2016 Mirai malware attack utilized compromised Internet of Things devices to to attack the infrastructure of the Internet. This massive attack caused shutdowns in North America and Europe.

A complex system of interrelated devices is by nature going to be vulnerable to attacks from various different vectors. This is an issue even when every device is secure when used by itself.

Due to the notion that a system’s total security is governed by its weakest point, an encompassing, end-to-end security approach is necessary to instill full confidence. This can be particularly difficult to do since hackers try to identify a single vulnerable point to breach the system. It’s not yet clear who will captain the move to comprehensive end-to-end security for Internet of Things technology.

There will be further difficulty in developing Internet of Things end-to-end solutions due to the institution’s lack of well-established standards to expound how the connected devices should interact. Corporations and other organizations then use their own solutions due to a lack of defined protocol, which muddies the waters.

So far, the UK-based company, ARM, is considered to be the vanguard of the security push for Internet of Things technology.

These security risks may cause some business leaders to recoil in fear, but the Internet of Things has real value. It’s incumbent on leaders to study the facts and weigh their options on how best to proceed. As part of that analysis, leaders should look into how best to safeguard their technology.

With the right security system and IT infrastructure, you can boost your firm’s organizational and productive capabilities. Take a look at our portfolio to see how we’ve helped our clients enhance their business efforts. Contact us and find out how our IT specialists partner with you to accomplish your business’s goals.