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5 Undeniable Reasons To Prioritize Enterprise IoT Security

 Published: March 27, 2020  Created: December 31, 2019

By Jeff Orr

The “Internet of Things” (IoT) is already a part of the enterprise, whether cyber security administrators are ready or not. Thanks to advances in network technology, seizing control of connected devices has become an active, and menacing, threat to the enterprise professional. Distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) threats have remained a concern for IT administrators. Now, cyber security teams must keep a hand on the pulse of botnets, phishing scams, IAM flaws and a variety of other means cyber-criminals can readily use to tap into IoT devices. 

To prevent the myriad of cyber terrors, security teams must be cognizant of ways in which IoT has been exploited. Cyber Security Hub developed a market report that uncovers five reasons why securing the IoT must already be on the organization’s agenda.

1: No Escaping ‘Digital’

According to Gartner, the installed base of non-consumer IoT may reach 5.8 billion devices by 2020, up from 4.8 billion at the end of 2019. The proliferation of all things “smart” poses immense security concerns. In the process of boosting IoT numbers, the attack surface drastically widens. Meanwhile, can security teams keep up with the shift? Can they ensure that the devices encrypt data or that the collective group has a regular patching/updating cadence?

2: Keep Security In Mind

Next in the multi-part IoT roadmap is grasping true security concerns around these connected devices. Amid this enormous growth and ease of access, there are visible security challenges: the devices are cost-constrained and resource-constrained. The security teams controlling IoT may in fact be ill-equipped to manage their collection of devices. It could even be skillset – meaning the team members lack the skills, tools or the knowledge to preside over this connectivity. Many of these question marks have meant that IoT is now a key driver for security spending and prioritization.

3: The Industry’s Shifting: Keep Up

As mentioned, the IoT space is accelerating at a rate of change that’s largely unprecedented – outside of the meteoric rise of something like mobile technology, or perhaps cloud computing. As such, there are residual effects. Rebecca Wynn, Information Technology CISO, said that the speed of acceptance could be jeopardizing the privacy of consumers and businesses. She called for the usage of IoT devices within the boundaries of regulatory best practices.

4: Information Exchange: Fortify Your Defense

In the face of a growing chain of IoT products, CISOs are charged with oversight, data analysis and data privacy, all of which require visibility and upward communication. But beyond this transparency, what can security professionals do to rein in their connected products? What should be prioritized? For one, the clear exchange of information – inside and outside of the specific enterprise – is integral. What’s more, cyber security experts are prioritizing other practices such as third-party risk management, vulnerability management, supplier monitoring and consolidation.

5: Can’t Ignore The ‘Billions’

The road ahead for IoT is contradictory: It’s both difficult to predict and plainly obvious. The certainty is that more and more of these products will find their way into the enterprise – streamlining employee efforts and cutting down on response times. But the more difficult figure to ascertain will be how many enterprises (securely) adopt IoT. In order to do so, it appears there will still need to be governmental and enterprise-wide changes.

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