The Internet of Things encompasses a wide range of hardware and software components that connect to the internet. From smartphones, speakers, doorbells, TVs, and thermostats to wearables like fitness trackers, smartwatches, and even bras that collect data on their user’s health on iot security. This technology has rapidly expanded in recent years as it provides convenience in areas such as transportation such as ride-sharing services and improved public safety by leveraging real-time location information. In addition, the Internet of Things is also utilized as a data collection tool to provide better diagnosis and treatment for patients.
Primary use of the device
When considering the Internet of Things, we must first look at the general-purpose or primary use of the device. For example, do we want to establish a connection between our refrigerator and the internet? If so, what will be used for this connection? For many thinkers in the IoT industry, it is an obvious decision that we connect our refrigerator to a cloud-based software system where various commands can be issued by our smartphone. However, we must also consider the safety and security implications of allowing our refrigerators to be on the internet.
The Internet of Things has been around for several years and while it is a rapidly expanding field, it is still heavily debated to what degree this technology can impact our lives. But the most important question is whether we are ready for this technology. Can the power grid handle the demand that is caused by millions of refrigerator/smart home products connecting to the internet?
Can we prevent hackers from taking control of our smart devices and wreaking havoc on the internet?
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Can we ensure the security and privacy of our data being collected by these smart devices? Does the general public understand how vulnerable these devices are to hacking and what would happen if one of these devices was hacked? Do we have legal recourse if a vendor breaches customer data or if customer data is exposed due to a breach in security on their IoT device?
Why do you need IoT security?
A Google study found that one of the most common attacks against connected devices is to hack them, either by connecting malware via a network or by connecting to a device’s control system through the local network. In addition, the study found that 83% of Smartphones were infected with at least one type of malware in 2016. This study clearly shows that our security and privacy are not something we can take for granted.
“IoT devices are irresistible targets for hackers because they are so poorly secured.” Most people store their personal information on a smartphone, but have you ever thought about what happens when that information is used to control your smart home?
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There could be a significant potential for this type of breach to result in property damage. There is also a possible risk of identity theft. For example, hackers can access your smartphone and link it to the internet allowing them access to all the personal information that you have stored on your phone such as banking information. Of course, not all hackers are out to steal your identity. As most people know, hate groups have been known to use stolen identities to harass others.
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Some IoT devices allow outside devices to connect directly to them via a virtual private network (VPN). This type of connection gives hackers access to the device’s control system and can allow them to remotely control the device. In addition, this type of connection can easily be breached by a hacker who is on your WiFi network. These connected devices have been known to have default passwords. In fact, in one case, a hacked home security camera recorded murder and then sent all of its videos to a server controlled by the attacker. It was later found that the IP address of the camera was easily traceable to a specific ISP. The ISP then contacted the authorities who then quickly became involved in the case. As you can see, hacking these devices is not as difficult as it may first seem.
In another extremely tragic case, a hacker hacked an internet-connected home and traveled to several states by controlling a smart thermostat. The hacker turned up the heat in his residence to over 100 degrees causing third-degree burns to several family members and causing smoke damage inside the home.
A study by IBM Security and Ponemon Institute, which surveyed 1,000 consumers in the United States and Japan, found that 74% of respondents said they would be willing to connect their cars to the internet. However, over 50% said they were “not confident” that this technology would be secure from hackers and others who may want to take control of their car with malicious intent. The survey also found that 66% of consumers were concerned about storing personal data . This can be because the data sent to a vehicle is often not encrypted.
A risk assessment study conducted by DST Systems and Ponemon Institute found that 76% of IoT users are unaware of the implications of poor security on IoT devices, with 36% not paying attention to this issue at all. The Internet of Things connects multiple smart devices; these connected devices are always online and collecting data from one another. This can result in the invasion of privacy and increase the risk of data breaches. Recent leaks have shown that a hacker was able to hack into an IoT security camera by accessing its local network. The hacker then used this device to spy on a person’s home and capture video footage of family members using the bathroom.
The most simple way for hackers to obtain information from smart devices is to exploit weak passwords or bugs in the software that is running on these devices. This can result in hackers obtaining your personal information without even hacking your device. Some of these devices contain personal information such as credit card and bank account numbers, birth dates, and other sensitive information. A hacker has been arrested for planting a GPS tracking device on a smartphone. While the device was disabled immediately, the hacker was able to retrieve personal text messages, emojis, and location data.