In order to talk about security in the IoT, we must go back to the concept of “Internet of Things”. The IoT arises from the possibility of connecting all types of devices to a network to collect data and analyze them. It is precisely this ability to open to the network what makes the devices somewhat vulnerable, as they become accessible remotely.
With the rise of the digital transformation, more and more companies have connected devices to maximize their operations. And with that, the annual number of attacks on IoT devices that occur picks.
For this reason, security measures in IoT are becoming increasingly important. IoT security should be a starting point within the company’s policy. This entails protecting both devices and networks, understanding security policies, threats and vulnerabilities and implementing policies to respond to them. Also, in the era of the GDPR, all of this is even more relevant.
What are the necessary measures to implement a holistic security policy in IoT?
For proper implementation of IoT security, it is essential that it is part of all the processes of the company, from the moment in which the solution is designed until it is placed in the market. Although IoT Security shouldn’t just stay there, it will also be necessary to educate consumers in cybersecurity, inform them of measures they should take, etc.
If you want your products and your solutions to be secure, we will have to carry out a series of measures, among which are:
- Implement security by design. This philosophy or work implies being aware of the importance of security for your product, and designing each of its functionalities with security as a principle. It consists of securing the integrity of the software and data and encrypt them from the start.
- Perform security audits in IoT both in the product design process and the final product. In many cases, companies perform security audits just before launching the product. When this happens, vulnerabilities and access points that have not been analyzed in an isolated way end up being lost in the production process. Therefore, security audits must become recurrent, carried out in intermediate processes, to ensure that all potential threats are covered. And of course, every time a new vulnerability appears, it should be resolved as quickly as possible, no matter in which stage of the production process the product is.
- Implementation of IoT security processes in all operations. Security should not be addressed as an isolated process within a product or solution. On the contrary, it will be necessary to find a way to protect any of the processes carried out in the company against threats. This involves training employees in cybersecurity, taking the appropriate preventive measures and implementing protocols for action in case of security breaches. When carrying out development tests in the same network, if the device of any of the employees is attacked, it is possible to access any other devices connected to that same network, be they machines, computers, or products.
- Continuous improvement of security. As we have already mentioned, security is not something that should stick to just the moment when the solution is delivered to the client. In IoT, you should bear in mind that malware is evolving more and more and that therefore, it can attack devices that were totally covered in security at first. Therefore, one of the essential measures to ensure security throughout the life cycle of the devices is being able to perform remote updates. These so-called “OTAs” contribute to keeping the devices safe by releasing software updates and patches whenever a new vulnerability can appear.
As you can see, the fact of not having a clear security policy in place in our companies can cause a real disaster, and with that, large monetary losses. Once again, we insist on the need to train employees in IoT security and cybersecurity. This is essential in order to avoid chain attacks for devices that are connected to our business network.
And this is even more important when we focus on the industrial sector, in which the number of devices connected to the network multiply, and the information that is transmitted between them can be really sensitive. And as more and more companies embody digitalization and immerse themselves in this Industrial Revolution that we have called “Industry 4.0”, we can say without fear that security in IoT is not only a “hot topic” but an essential in any corporate strategy.
At Barbara IoT, convinced of all of this, all our employees receive periodic training in cybersecurity, to ensure that they do not become the weakest link. In addition, security in IoT is part of our value proposition:
- We follow the security-by-design approach
- We contribute to securing the IoT deployments of our clients
- We ensure secure management of IoT devices throughout their life cycle
- And we provide remote updates securely.
Do not stay behind, and start securing your IoT applications with us!
Article written by Cristina Marcos, Marketing Manager at Barbara IoT.
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