Experts View

The Expanding Internet of Things (IoT) Creates More Opportunities for Cybercrime


Mitish Chitnavis, Chief Technology Officer, iValue InfoSolutions

The Internet of Things (IoT) has become the fastest growing technology, with a tremendous impact on social life and corporate environments due to its quick development and ability to offer numerous services. IoT has overtaken all sectors of modern human life, including education, healthcare, and business, involving the storing of sensitive information about persons and corporations, financial data transactions, product development, and marketing. However, in today’s context, the success of IoT cannot be overlooked, as assaults and threats against IoT devices and facilities are on the rise. Cyber-attacks have become a part of IoT, endangering user data and digital societies.

Internet of Things is all about US not really about things. The human interaction with devices and digital experiences no longer sit side-by-side, they are bound ever tighter by this new way of life. It is observed that the human physical experience is moving at incredibly fast pace towards digital world than ever before, it must be protected, as digital security now directly impacts the physical world more than ever.
Internet of Things to evolve effectively, we must resolve the security challenges inherent to its growth. These challenges are:
  • Identity: It is important to associate the endpoints to the user operating the endpoint.
  • Privacy: Implementing Confidentiality and Integrity of the data stored or use of PII in the IoT service or product. End-user control over the storage of PII and the security keys and security algorithms used to secure the data is paramount. All providers of IoT services that rely on consumer data – as well as any partner companies capturing or using such data – have an obligation to respect individuals’ privacy and keep personally identifiable or privacy-invasive information secure.
  • Security: Starts by implementing security within the software or product development lifecycle. Implementation of Zero Trust Architecture in the devices to services ecosystem
  • Availability: Ensuring constant connectivity between Endpoints and their respective services
IoT and the burgeoning Data 
Consider all of the interconnected gadgets we have – smartphones, iPads, PCs, fitness watches, and a variety of other gadgets. We have been using them to communicate, connect socially, keep track of our health and fitness, and conduct business. Although an IoT user may not realise it, connecting anything to the internet establishes a data exchange relationship that contributes to the global Data Sphere. The Global Data Sphere benefits from all of this information. A report by International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that by 2025 there will be 79.4 zettabytes of data produced just by connected IoT devices alone.
That’s a lot of data being generated by IoT devices, and it’s not going down anytime soon. Understanding the rate at which IoT devices are connected, as well as the amount of data that will be produced, is crucial. While this data will assist organisations and tech suppliers give solutions and develop scalable partnerships, it is also a potential weakness, and businesses are becoming increasingly concerned about security, network capacity, and cost.
Paving way for more opportunities and threats
IoT has evolved as a top asset for many businesses and industries, and this trend will continue. Considering that IoT is altering and modifying not only businesses but entire industries, it comes as no surprise that the industrial expansion of IoT will pave the way for further proliferation of the IoTscape. It is predicted that IoT Spending will increase to $1.1 trillion by 2023. From end-users to enterprises, IoT has become increasingly pervasive in today’s era. The rapid expansion of linked IoT devices opens up a world of possibilities, but it also raises serious cybersecurity concerns.
As the volume of data and devices grows, hackers have more and more ways to compromise your security, access critical data, and even steal your assets. Cyber criminals can get access to connected networks through a susceptible device, enabling them to steal critical corporate data and user passwords. As a result, organisations must know how to secure IoT devices and identify the IoT risks. Malware attack, DDoS attack, Device mismanagement and Data breaches are a few common IoT risks. Taking action to mitigate risk today will put organisations in a better position against the aforementioned risks. Organisations can engage in some protection practices such as:
  • Strengthen the passwords: On IoT devices, most organisations use weak passwords that are configured by default. Sometimes this may be due to the large number of IoT devices to be controlled, in large organisations. However, organisations should prefer or practice using separate passwords for each device. Using strong, unique passwords and keeping track of them, as well as making sure to update them on a regular basis, is a simple yet effective way to safeguard your IoT infrastructure.
  • Software and Patches: It’s critical to keep your device up to date by checking for software updates on a constant basis. If not patched with regular upgrades, IoT devices become unprotected over time. To maintain the network’s security, IT admins must make upgrades to IoT apps regularly. New software’s usually equips IoT devices with security patches and bug fixes, which increase IoT security.
  • Securing Networks: IoT apps are protected from unauthorised access by firewalls, encryption, and secure connection protocols such as zero trust. Many companies are beginning to adopt the Zero Trust strategy, which is centred on the concept of “Never Trust, Always Verify.” Another method of preventing unauthorised users or hackers from entering across corporate servers is network segmentation.
As a whole IoT refers to the billions of physical devices around the world that are connected to the internet, all gathering and sharing data. Despite the fact that IoT has altered the work dynamics of organisations and how they use technology, they also constitute a significant threat to businesses today in terms of cybercrime. IoT is the wave of the future, and it is one of the most significant developments in internet history. If organisations want to take advantage of the best, they must be prepared for the worst. In this context, taking IoT security seriously will be a fundamental aspect.

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