In the past several years, technologies have advanced at lightning speed, making life easier and allowing people to use time more efficiently. Office workers are mostly working remotely, and IoT enables smart home devices to automatically change your thermostat, start the music, and help you complete research.
By the same token, all of these advances can be as vulnerable to security threats and cause issues as any other type of software. And considering that they’re installed pretty much anywhere in homes and workplaces, it’s more crucial than ever to ensure you’re protected.
What Is IoT?
IoT is short for Internet of Things. It refers to every single item that can be enhanced by connecting it to the Internet. Siri. Alexa. Motion sensors. Any gadget, appliance, or device you can control from your smartphone. Kids’ toys that can interact with them.
The difference between these devices and traditional computers (such as desktops, laptops, tablets, and phones) is that they are generally items normally not connected to the Internet. Yet, once they are, you can communicate with them either by manually inputting data or by simply talking to them.
How Does IoT Work?
IoT is a form of software as a service (SaaS). Items embedded with IoT software share data that are entered into them with either a network of other devices or cloud storage. This information can be used for a myriad of purposes, such as collecting information, monitoring systems, analyzing data, or performing any tasks you set them up to do.
Depending on the type of item, IoT can vary in how it works:
- You can manually input data for the items to perform tasks.
- It can collect data based on user behavior.
- It can use artificial intelligence to make decisions.
Devices that can be turned into smart devices through IoT technology can range from everyday objects (such as thermostats) to biometrics access control.
On a grander scale, IoT can be used to provide energy to entire cities, monitor vehicle fleets (car rentals, military, business vehicles), tracking shipping containers, and operating factory equipment.
Business Benefits of IoT
In addition to making things easier at home, IoT also significantly improve business processes, including:
More Efficient Operations
IoT improves the quality and productivity of businesses by evaluating and transmitting real-time data without the need of human intervention. This helps streamline repetitive tasks and accomplish rote functions much faster than if a person were doing them. While this may seem like a dangerous slippery slope where workers are substituted by technology, it actually frees them to focus on more complex job functions.
IoT enables your entire workforce to work together on any project, regardless of their physical location — even when they regularly work with confidential documents. This is because IoT devices can be interconnected through cloud infrastructure. IoT can also use algorithms to collect data and alert team members of tools that would make their job easier, or of items that need special attention from them.
IoT can be used to track compliance with certain industry requirements, such as food temperature and air quality. This saves businesses the money it would cost to hire people to do so and from any potential fines related to noncompliance. Another example is to implement IoT into lighting and climate control to reduce overhead costs when offices are sparsely occupied or empty.
IoT allows businesses and organizations to provide better services to their client base. Take, for example, how it has been implemented within the healthcare industry. The COVID-19 pandemic made it a lot trickier to get to doctor’s appointments — especially for immunocompromised people. However, IoT allows healthcare professionals to monitor health remotely through wearable devices. This makes it possible to check vitals such as blood pressure and heartbeat, even when they’re miles away.
All businesses track key performance indicators (KPIs). IoT can help this process be more accurate by using machine learning to gather, analyze, and store data in real-time — regardless of the amount of information collected and studied. This can help better manage your business operations and make data-driven decisions.
IoT uses machine learning to identify patterns, trends, and deficiencies. It can also predict possible maintenance issues before they happen; so you can be alerted to them before it causes a disruption in your business operations.
Top 5 IoT Security Issues
As with any system that works through the internet, IoT can experience cybersecurity concerns. The most common IoT security issues include:
Common vulnerabilities for IoT items include easy-to-guess passwords, connecting to public networks, poor user authentication, unencrypted data, and failing to provide maintenance or prioritize privacy protection. Another factor that increases many of these vulnerabilities is using outdated operating systems.
Just as with any computer network or online account, passwords can be guessed — putting your entire network at risk. While implementing robust password protocols may offer more protection, it’s more practical to add a layer of security through biometrics.
Human error is often the cause of cybersecurity issues, regardless of device. This can be due to sharing passwords, using unsecured networks, or falling for phishing scams. One way to decrease this risk is to provide continued cybersecurity training to employees, as well as restricting access based on job roles.
Malware is specifically designed to gain unauthorized access to a device. This can be achieved by brute force attacks, phishing scams, sending malicious code, or through unsecured routers — and devices that aren’t secured or software that isn’t updated regularly are at higher risk. Keep in mind that IoT devices rarely come with default security already installed, so it’s up to you to look for viable solutions.
Cyberattacks are easier to accomplish through unsecured networks — such as shared ones at hotels, airports, airplanes, and other public spaces. When this occurs, hackers can gain remote access to IoT devices or shut off power completely.
All of the issues mentioned above can be addressed with the right cybersecurity technologies, such as Smart Eye’s enterprise cloud storage and security measures.
Protect Your Network With Smart Eye Technology
Identification technologies are vital to protecting your business from hackers and criminals. With continuous cybersecurity measures in place, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that only authorized individuals are accessing information they need to see.
At Smart Eye Technology, we provide powerful, comprehensive, and affordable cybersecurity measures across all devices, including IoT. We also make things simple by allowing you to control all implemented solutions and tools from one single platform.
Contact us or schedule a demo to see how we can help you protect your network.