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IoT Challenges Ahead – 2018 brings security awareness, but risks persist

July 3, 2018

With Internet of things (IoT) technology continuing to offer increased value to businesses – from process optimization to improved customer experiences – implementation of connected devices continues to grow. Though this growth is good in many ways, security and risk (S&R) professionals are struggling. According to “The State of IoT Security 2018” from Forrester, security offerings often fail to fully address or secure deployments, leading to increased risk of data loss, physical damage, and lost revenue. Fortunately, Forrester’s report shows concerns regarding security are growing across the supply chain and this added attention may signal change.

Catch-up is in Process

In recognition of these rapid changes in technology, IoT security spending is increasing, but S&R professionals are still working to catch-up. While 92% of enterprise-based global technology security decision makers have security policies in place for IoT devices, over half of them do not feel these policies are adequate. Increased budgets are helping shift this scenario, but it is also likely that some of this budget will be taken from other IT security areas. This new focus is also requiring businesses to shift spending towards data- and application-centric security. Fortunately, Forrester’s survey also found that 49% of respondents plan to increase IoT security spending in 2018.

Collaboration is Required

Every device in an IoT network helps keep people and/or systems connected. Deploying and integrating these devices into a business or manufactured product requires close collaboration among departments including operations, hardware development, software development, business insights, security, and even legal. Similarly, the security and risk team must foster this same collaboration to help ensure security.

IoT Needs a Dedicated Strategy

Old strategies will not work on new tools. Just as the technology is changing, the way businesses approach and maintain security must also change. This means S&R teams must expect – and prepare for – the unexpected. With cybersecurity, this means full risk assessments, simulated data breaches, enhanced employee training and, as mentioned, collaboration across the organization.

To help ensure that the newest technology deployments do not fall victim to malicious attacks, a focus on security must be maintained and increased in the years to come. For more information and greater detail on the current state of IoT security, read Forrester’s full report here: “The State of IoT Security 2018.”

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