Internet of Things (IoT) & Cybersecurity Challenges, Benefits & Solutions

Posted by XcelDigital on January 22nd, 2020

At a Glance
  • Internet-of-Things (IoT) has been widely accepted at a consumer level finding its way to many applications in our daily life.
  • Companies, on the other hand, understand the value IoT would bring to the business; however, they have been hesitant to invest due to security concerns, cyber attacks and the harm to the business thereof.
  • Only 28% customers pay major emphasis on IoT-related cyber security strategies, this is possibly due a tangible ROI for the investment.
  • Only 10% of enterprise customers expressed confidence over successfully detecting and preventing malware attacks on IoT devices.
  • Assessing security risks and implementing an agile methodology can protect IoT devices from vulnerabilities and grow the IoT market to 20.4 billion devices by 2020, a rise of 12 billion in 3 years.
  • This article provides an in-depth analysis of cybersecurity as it relates to IoT in the Business-2-Business (B2B) world giving you the ability to evaluate and implement IoT to better address your business needs.
Many of us have heard of consumer mobile apps such as IFTTT (If This Then That) that can allow you to turn on your iRobot vacuum cleaner from the comfort of your phone. Over the past few weeks, global consumer chains such as Dominos are hyper-connected with their consumer via IFTTT and IoT in-turn driving huge untapped revenue. There are many such applications catered to the consumers that demonstrate rapid adoption and application of Internet of Things (IoT) reflecting the transformation in the digital landscape.
Despite IoT’s success in B2C / Consumer industry, the underlying cybersecurity challenges such as identity theft, possibility of impersonation, and hacking are posing a significant hindrance in unlocking the demand for Internet of Things in the industrial, enterprise business-2-business (B2B) spheres.
The article aims to delineate the existing challenges in ensuring cybersecurity for IoT devices, the methods undertaken to resolve these issues, and the application of Azure IoT for a secure solution.
Growing Risk Landscape – How to Resolve?
It is important to consider that cybersecurity is not merely a technology hazard, rather an enterprise-wide risk. As the needs of business today surpass the boundaries of the organization, be it for communication with customers, vendors and trading partners or even co-working with third-party vendors, there emerges a need for strengthening cybersecurity to protect the business from malicious attacks. Moreover, increasing use of Internet and mobility is changing the dynamics of security, adding risk and exposure as the business is no longer contained within the predefined frame.
To avoid such risks, cybersecurity systems should consider a broader network - including but not limited to customers, collaborators, suppliers, business partners and even their alumni — holistically the entire “business ecosystem.”

What Are Some Major Security Failures in IoT History?

Here are a few real-life examples of incidents related to IoT and related security failures. These cases could have been avoided with the appropriate security protocols and enterprise investments seeking proactive solutions.
  • One of the earliest IoT attacks was Stuxnet in 2010, which targeted a “smart” industrial controller utilized in nuclear facilities. The malware destroyed almost one-quarter of the centrifuges, which brought a nuclear program into halt for the next two years.
  • In 2015, a Russian IoT malware brought significant impact to the electrical grids of Ukraine, leaving 230,000 people without power.
  • In the following year, the famous Mirai botnet incident took place in the IoT history. Nearly 360,000 servers of Dyn servers were impacted, taking down multiple high-traffic websites.Mirai identified and infected vulnerable IoT devices. The devices were not infected until they were rebooted.
  • In 2017, a hacker got access to 200,000 open printers and printed over the Internet affecting over 150,000 printers.
  • Following the Mirai botnet incident, a subsequent attack took place in January 2018. Okiru, which is a variant of Mirai malware, targeted ARC processors embedded in billions of IoT products.

 

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