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Can an IoT device ever be secure?

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The cyber threat has never been greater, with high profile DDoS attacks putting the issue high on the agenda for both businesses and governments. Only at the end of last year an attack which was reported to be the largest of its kind, brought down most of the internet across the UK and America. The growth of such incidents stems from the simple fact that more ‘things’ are now connected to the internet than ever before.

The continuing spate of attacks have therefore shone a bright spotlight on IoT security – highlighting it to be both weak and ineffective. It’s an issue which the industry has taken seriously for some time, but a sharp rise in both incidents and media headlines will naturally propel the problem further up the value chain.

The daunting task of security
The crux of the problem stems from the physical time and associated cost involved in IoT deployments around the secure provisioning of devices, and how we get a device onto the network. This has historically been a daunting task, often to the point of impossible.

Traditionally with any IoT deployment, someone has to physically go out and set devices up – even if that means climbing up a windmill in the rain. The uncertainty of custody, manual passwords and the need for onsite intervention throughout the product lifecycle then create security issues, which can often lead to that person having to go back out to climb the windmill.

However, the security fears over such antiquated inadequacies which have long plagued the industry can be solved, but to do so it must start with the IoT service piece, rather than at the device-end. From that starting point a circle of life can be created – ensuring seamless and secure connectivity in a way that means the person who was once climbing the windmill is now sitting comfortably in a chair.

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