Today, work stations, gyms, healthcare centers, manufacturing units, regular offices, warehouses, etc closely resemble Ethiopian set ups described in the science fiction novels and movies. This technologically powered and connected world of wireless, smart devices and futuristic wearable also known as the Internet of Things or IoT, has turned digital fantasy to reality.
In short, IoT is the innovative outcome of the ubiquity of internet and mobile devices that can effortlessly tap the virtual functionalities of a typical mobile application to manage activities in real-world. Connected devices, home assistants and smart applications like smart refrigerators, talking ovens, fitness bands and other wearable hardware are transmitting data on the go to perform an array of functions.
Some Useful Stats
As per the statistical data by Gartner, there are nearly 8.4 billion connected devices in the world and the number is predicted to reach 20.4 billion by 2020. Which means, IoT has managed to create a tremor, more impactful than the revolution stirred by the desktops and smartphone app development in all facets of life.
How Businesses are Seeing This?
In the business and enterprise scenario, IoT is recognized as a hot area for investments to drive more value for customers and end-users as well as influence the bottom line of firms with efficiency, collaboration, accuracy and agility. “Digital business moves at a faster pace than traditional business, and traditional security approaches designed for maximum control will no longer work in the new era of digital innovation,” suggests the Gartner reports.
But, what exactly are the kind of security risks that IoT connected devices and systems are exposed to?
As the connected things become more communicative through the internet-mediated pathways, it has a rather large scope for vulnerabilities. From the end device perspective, there are challenges such as lack of strong encryption, device security threats that can lead to device infiltration and network hacks and poor access control. And from the network perspective, the absence of adequate encryption in networks and endpoints, flat topology that provides ample possibilities to access data systems and malware threats persist as greater risks.
Read Also: How to Secure Privacy Online
Incidentally, another research by Tripwire that involved survey of IT professional revealed that about 59 percent of respondents from small, medium and large businesses attributed large scale growth of IoT projects to be the major cause for network risks.
The shortfall of the right tools for secured network infrastructure, privacy and device safety has hit the roof, raising the bar for security standards and collaborative opportunities for security providers. Based on recent research on security trends influenced by burgeoning IoT market, listed below are some of the notable transformations in security space:
Increased Demand for Professional Security Services
Businesses have cut-throat competition when it comes to employing the befitting services and professionals amidst the shortage of supply of qualified and experienced cyber security talent. As a result, the demand for network security jobs have shot up in the recent years to onboard skilled professionals and architects to discharge critical roles and duties that require overseeing internal information security and network infrastructure to protect against threats and attacks.
The forecasts on the worldwide spending on professional services for IoT security as of 2018 is 946 million USD. The amount is expected to touch nearly 1,221 and 1,589 million USD in 2019 and 2020, respectively.
Regulatory Compliance will Largely Influence IoT Implementation:
The much recent, GDRP led companies and consumers to rethink the way they viewed data security and privacy. And as more number of consumers begin to realize the value of their personal data on devices and businesses begin to look for more legitimate ways to monetize on that data, the scope of threats and risks can certainly be minimized.
Coupled with regulatory compliance and guidelines on IoT projects to augment critical infrastructure protection (CIP) would lead to increased focus on security.
Growth of IoT Network Security Providers:
IoT network security is more complex that the regular network security as it takes into consideration many communication protocols, need for higher security standards and device capabilities. Security providers are working to build endpoint security tools like antivirus, firewalls, antimalware, detection systems, etc to not only secure the networks as well as the back-end systems.
Need for Device Authentication:
IoT device manufacturers are integrating more robust authentication features like bio-metric, passwords and two-factor authentication for consumers that are handling single user and multi-user, connected devices like smart cars, smart fridge, etc. For enterprise IoT devices, the device manufacturers are needing machine-to-machine authentications like the use of sensor technology to increase security.
Demand for Security Analytics Solutions:
IoT devices gather data that are used for taking actions and making necessary decisions. Security solution providers are increasing the sophistication layers and features of those devices by leveraging machine learning, AI and big data analytics technologies that help in predicting probable risks, detect anomalies and attacks that can not be determined in traditional network and security solutions.
Global security solution providers are enabling IoT devices with the ability to authenticate device access and data exchange between devices, back-end systems and apps using API security features. This helps authorized devices developers and apps using APIs to identify patterns that may lead to compromise of data integrity and attacks against APIs.
In addition to the notable innovations in security, the overall market has opened new venues to nurture growth of many other technologies that are in the infancy stage. But the primary focus of IoT security market mostly lies on encryption, security analytics and new IoT standards that would mature over time.
“The continued evolution of IoT-specific security threats will undoubtedly drive innovation in this space, so expect more new IoT-specific security technologies to appear in the creation phase in the near future, many of which may align around vertical- and industry-specific use cases such as connected medical devices or industrial applications,” says an excerpt from the 2017 Forrester Research report.
On an ongoing basis, it is a must for businesses to understand the security limitations accompanying the wide-spread usage of IoT devices to proactively take measures to keep hackers and cyber security risks at bay.
Smart Sight is a provider of custom smartphone application development services. To know more about the latest IoT news and updates, visit their site.