Growing Threat Of IoT Security Issuesjacob Evans
Today’s smart grid ties in operation and energy measures as a means of energy conservation. In this equation, we find smart appliances and smart meters which all work towards efficiency. Still, as devices and machines become more connected, security risk grows. How much should we be worrying about IoT security issues? More importantly, what can we do about it?
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The Easier It Gets, The Riskier It Gets
We recently spoke with OptioLabs CEO, Gregg Smith who voiced his concerns about the increased use of intelligent appliances. “As soon as any appliance gets an IP connection there’s risk – since the next step is connecting to personal data such as credit card or bank accounts.”
It’s only natural that developers of connected objects would seek to make things even more user friendly. If you’re going to have your heating/cooling system hooked up to the utility company for convenience, doesn’t automated bill pay make sense? Possibly, but it also opens up a whole new realm of vulnerabilities where cyber criminals could access personal information. This risk is present across cell phones, laptops, appliances, industrial controls… essentially anything that connects to the cloud.
BYOD And Free Wi-Fi
Smith also identifies the bring your own device (BYOD) to work and using free Wi-Fi practices as serious gaps in security. Phones can easily be hacked from a distance in order to eavesdrop on conversations. In fact, there have been reports of board meetings being compromised in order to short stock sales based on confidential information. Also, if you decide to use free Wi-Fi, be aware that anyone can break into your phone and access sensitive data.
Dual Persona Cell Phone
For cell phone security, the ideal solution combines being able to use features while preserving security. “Once the work day is over, or if the employee moves outside of a certain GPS location, you want to be able to let them use social media or take pictures,” says Smith. “With security measures embedded at the time of manufacture or deployment, this dual functionality is possible.”
This kind of adaptable technology scans the environment looking for potential security risks. The system monitors, identifies and halts any undesirable functionality based on use, location, and context.
The Tools Are There
Behavior modification might be one way to avoid online risk, but it’s not a reliable strategy. Instead, tools specifically designed for our current, and future, interconnected reality must be developed.
For example, OptioLabs’ OptioCore security binder for the Android framework is also applicable to Google’s IoT product Brillo as well as for Linux. Innovative solutions like these will allow us to advance in step with a more convenient – and more complex – digital world.
OptioLabs CEO Gregg Smith is a featured speaker at this year’s CyberMaryland Conference.
Offer contextually intelligent mobile security for your team. Contact OptioLabs today.