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IoT Needs Security Too

Thursday 10 August 2017

Remember the time when security software wasn’t viewed as a necessity for computers? Remember when you first realised you needed matching programs for your phones and tablets too? Both answers to these questions not only seem comically long ago, but they also may be difficult to answer as it feels like we’ve always had security measures installed.

But regardless of whether you remember, there was a time not too long ago where hackers and viruses were bandied about willy-nilly, where technological Jack Sparrows were able to rove through your personal files, wreaking complete havoc. With the ever-increasing reliance on smart devices in our homes and workplaces, the next seemingly obvious question we need to ask ourselves is ‘remember when we didn’t have security for our IoT devices?’ But alas, the answer to this question is worryingly much easier, because the answer is right now. 

If you’re still struggling to see why we need security for IoT devices then consider that Gartner has claimed there will be ‘20.8 billion (devices in use) by 2020’, amongst these are the coffee machines, fridges, TVs, webcams and even thermostats that currently adorn our home and office interiors. And while a hacker accessing your thermostat and changing your beloved 20°C ecosystem doesn’t sound the most immediately terrifying, when you think that a large majority of webcams used around the world run through Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, it prompts a scarier thought.

IoT devices are seen as the jumping-off point for hackers. Meaning that even if the possibility of someone hacking your smart fridge to order an ungodly amount of Cheesestrings isn’t enough to secure your smart devices, the fact that they can use said entry to reach more conventional internet-enabled devices like computers and phones should be more than enough incentive to get the IoT security dilemma under control.  

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