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https://www.dahuasecurity.com/products/keyTechnologies/742
INSIGHTS

As IoT connections edge toward over 20 billion, challenges and opportunities also arise

As IoT connections edge toward over 20 billion, challenges and opportunities also arise
Needless to say, IoT or the Internet of Things has become a huge phenomenon. At the same time, the rising number of IoT connections has created both challenges and opportunities. This note examines what they are.
Needless to say, IoT or the Internet of Things has become a huge phenomenon. At the same time, the rising number of IoT connections has created both challenges and opportunities. This note examines what they are.
 
IoT is now integral to the everyday life. For those of us working in security, IP cameras are good examples. Access control devices such as readers and controllers are more and more migrating to the Internet as well.
 
Beyond security, IoT is seen in various applications. In factories, for example, sensors on equipment and machine can detect abnormalities for predictive maintenance purposes. In smart city applications, flood or environmental sensors can inform administrators of rising water or carbon dioxide concentration levels, allowing them to act accordingly.
 
Indeed, IoT has become something that we can’t live without. And the uptrend is going to continue. According to a recent whitepaper by ABI Research, there are 8.6 billion IoT connections today; by 2026, that number will nearly triple to 23.6 billion.
 

Security challenges IoT brings

 
While IoT provides convenience to the everyday life, it brings challenges as well, especially in the form of security threats. If not properly protected, IoT devices can be subject to attacks and security breaches.
 
Examples are aplenty. Reports of baby cams being taken over by hackers are seen from time to time. Hostile actors taking control of smart thermostats can find out when the house might be empty and thus burglarize it.
 
Meanwhile, a study by software solutions provider Check Point finds organizations and individuals could be hacked via their fax machines, using certain vulnerabilities in the communication protocols used in tens of millions of fax devices globally. IP cameras can be used to launch DDoS attacks; the attacks against Dyn in 2016 serves as a vivid example.
 

Opportunities arise

 
This is where device manufacturers and end users turn to IoT security, which has become an increasingly big market. In fact, according to the ABI whitepaper, total revenue in the IoT security space will reach US$16.8 billion by 2026, from $4 billion in 2020.
 
The paper classifies all IoT markets into three distinct market clusters based on low, moderate, and high security requirements. It forecasts the high-security market cluster, which includes increased security profile devices like ATMs, points of sale (PoSs), healthcare devices, and OEM telematics, is expected to dominate, generating the majority of IoT security revenue and increasing from $2.4 billion in 2020 to $10.8 billion in 2026.
 
Part of that demand comes from related regulations. The California Security of Connected Devices Senate Bill, for example, states that IoT device makers must equip products with “reasonable security features that are appropriate to the nature and function of the device.” Also, the European standard organization ETSI has issued “Cybersecurity for Consumer Internet of Things: Baseline Requirements,” which provides guidelines for devices manufacturers who are advised to eliminate universal default passwords, implement a means to manage reports of vulnerabilities and keep software updated.
 
Amid the strong growth potential in the market, IoT security solutions or service providers should seize the opportunities and provide the solutions that meet demands from both suppliers and end users.
 
For example, each connected device is advised to have a unique identification or digital certificate, which establishes the root of trust for the device’s entire lifecycle. Certificate issuance can be performed internally in an organization, and IoT security providers can offer related solutions in this regard. As the ABI whitepaper points out: “Certificate authorities and other security vendors can provide assistance in this process by helping organizations issue their own certificates without actually being involved in the overarching process.”
 
For users, they may need some form of intelligence and automation for network security and threat remediation so they don’t have to monitor each and every connected asset. This, then, provides opportunities for network and communications security service providers. “Equipping specific high-value organizational applications with some form of intelligent and autonomous (or semiautonomous) cloud or network protection will greatly assist IT operations,” the whitepaper points out.
 
In conclusion, IoT security has gotten more attention. Demands and regulations are likely to trigger higher growth in the IoT security market in the years to come. This, then, presents opportunities for security solutions and service providers who can help vendors and users meet their needs and requirements. Only by making IoT devices and services more secure can the rising number of IoT connections make sense and be meaningful.
 


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