IoT Security – The Wake-up Call for Organizations

Posted On: April 6, 2018, By: 313 Views

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IoT is touching every industry today and is currently the big revolution that is impacting businesses and consumers. Over the last decade, it has given a wider scope to businesses to expand and manage their operations efficiently. By 2020, the estimated number of connected devices will reach 20.8 billion. However, its widespread adaption has come along with cyber-attacks, security risks, data privacy issues, and more.

“Worldwide IoT security spending will reach $1.5 billion in 2018” – Gartner. The forecast took place in congruence with Gartner’s finding that “nearly 20% of organizations observed at least one IoT-based attack in the past three years.” With IoT security being one of the topmost concerns, CIOs must continue to ponder protection areas for the same.

 

What is the Current Situation?

It is evident that there exists a big knowledge gap, confusion, lack of well-defined guidelines, and policies to tackle the security glitches globally. For instance, the DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack with Boston Children’s Hospital, which restricted the access to key health data was a clear reminder to the health care industry.

 

Why is IoT Security Vital?

  • Cyber-attacks on businesses are rampant and they come along with ever rising costs. According to The Global State of Information Security Survey 2018 by PwC – “Cyber-attacks that manipulate or destroy data can undermine trusted systems without the owner’s knowledge and have the potential to damage critical infrastructure.” And in the same survey, “29% of the respondents reported loss or damage of internal records as a result of security incident”.
  • Organizational network is connected to many endpoints. Hackers can use any of the endpoints to hack an organization’s confidential information and possibly pass it on to its competitors.
  • Obsolete tracking systems to detect and face the existing and emerging threats.
  • Connected cameras can be used by hackers to perform a number of activities such as changing camera settings, view & click images, etc.

 

IoT devices connected over unprotected networks pass on the control to attackers to send trojans or other malware spread through spam. The absence of firewalls over an open network access makes CCTVs and other connected devices vulnerable to hacking. Also, the default log-in credentials that are frequently used for them fall prey to nefarious attacks. The MIRAI botnet attack (part of the largest DDoS attack on record) would vouch for it where it took advantage of insecure IoT devices and was able to compromise CCTV cameras and routers, leaving almost entire internet inaccessible on the U.S. east coast.

 

It is essential to embrace IoT to tap the potential opportunities it creates. However, to meet its evident risks, considering investments and allocating budgets is equally important. In this context, it is interesting to note Gartner’s predictions – “Through 2022, half of all security budgets for IoT will go to fault remediation, recalls and safety failures rather than protection”.

 

Why do Organizations Ignore IoT Security?

The straight answer is the lack of awareness and the inability to tackle the emerging threats. Many organizations are of the view that there is no major data for hackers to do anything differently. In fact, many companies ignore the threats as they believe that their existing security measures are strong, not vulnerable, and security risks are not costly. However, the IoT risks are real and evident. And they will prove costly to the organizations until and unless they have stringent security measures in place to protect their networks.

 

The hack of Tesla S car is another example to show what hackers can do with the existing system of security controls. In that case, hackers took complete control of the car while being 12 miles away. Luckily no damage was caused. However, it is the wake-up call for organizations to put solid measures to address the security threats, IoT devices are prone to.

 

Everything is changing the IoT way! Thus, adapting to the changes is mission critical. However, having strong governance around IoT security puts an organization to an advantage with cost-effectiveness, efficiency gains, minimized human efforts, and more.

 

There are dedicated IoT platform providers across the globe, tirelessly working to find solutions for security issues. It is crucial to partner with result-oriented IoT companies. KocharTech is one of those providers trusted by leading Fortune 500 companies. With regular firmware upgrades and security checks that restrict cameras and other IoT devices from being compromised; we offer secured connectivity, IoT device management, remote support tools, and custom integration to enable a securer connected ecosystem for businesses.

 

Through our industry-agnostic IoT platform and actionable analytics, we have enabled various organizations reap multiple business benefits such as operational efficiency, improved customer experience, strengthened safety & security, and more. To start a securer IoT journey, get in touch with us.

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