The security controls and encryption capabilities of today’s IoT devices are weak. This problem exposes these IoT devices to potential threats. Before talking about the Internet of Things security thing, let us understand these vulnerabilities.
- Compromising environmental control systems and smart appliances (such as coffee makers, electrical systems, and heating) in workplaces, which could lead to lost profits. For example sabotage of temperature controls in the server room to cause equipment failure.
- Gaining unauthorized access to building security controls. For example, to unlock doors or capture CCTV footage.
- Take control of a multifunction device to disrupt internet access.
- Remotely accessible IoT devices have microphones to listen to sensitive conversations.
- Taking control of a vehicle’s functions, such as intentionally damaging the brakes of a vehicle.
- Controlling medical equipment in a hospital such as interfering with magnetic resonance imaging [MRI Machines].
- Access sensitive data or personal information such as customer names or credit card numbers through IoT devices connected to corporate networks.
These are very common but severe vulnerabilities. And, leaving them untreated can cause huge damage. To avoid these vulnerabilities, Internet of Things security is very important.
Tips For Securing IoT Devices
Before adopting IoT devices in your organization, it is important to research security protocols and understand the types of data transmitted and received by these devices. As IoT devices will increasingly find their way into the workplace, your organization will need to establish plans and policies to reduce the risk of cybersecurity incidents affecting your network. These plans and policies should consider the points below:
- Require personal IoT devices to only connect to a separate network (e.g. a guest Wi-Fi network).
- Change the default IoT device passwords. If password rules allow, choose a passphrase rather than a password for all workplace IoT devices.
- Use two-factor authentication to add an extra layer of security to devices or apps.
- Ensure all data generated by IoT devices is encrypted.
- Disable all automatic login features.
Apply security patches and updates to IoT devices (if allowed).
- Monitor, detect and rectify any security issues related to IoT devices.
- Research to find customer reviews and safety ratings for various manufacturers and products.
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