The importance of the Internet of Things (IoT) for an organization cannot be underestimated. It allows the business to gain access to internal insights and information in a quick and efficient manner. However, despite its usefulness, due to the nature of how the IoT operates – through connected devices that communicate and pass on sensitive information to each other – it can lead to severe ramifications for the business if breached.
To protect your company from suffering losses due to the security of your IoT, here are a few simple but effective practices to follow:
1. Understand Your Endpoints
Every IoT device carries an endpoint that can easily be hacked into by cybercriminals. Therefore, all endpoints of these devices must be identified and monitored regularly to ensure the safety and security of the company.
2. Track and Manage Your Devices
To help protect the company’s network, it would be wise to identify the connected devices on the IoT and their roles. This may be difficult to do for every organization, so an alternative would be to install an asset discovery, tracking, and management solution before starting any IoT project.
3. Identify What IT Security Cannot Address
IoT projects comprise a physical and a cyber aspect. The cyber aspect can be addressed easily by IT security. However, that is not the case with the physical aspect, which will require immense thought and collaboration between departments regarding its security procedures.
4. Consider Patching and Remediation
The devices that the business is considering implementing in the IoT project must be updatable and be eligible for patching and remediation. Alongside increased security, this is to prevent devices from being unable to support the code, which may change later on.
5. Use a Risk-Driven Strategy
Companies should adopt a risk-driven strategy for IoT projects which involves prioritizing crucial company assets in the IoT infrastructure. After observing a set of assets, the IT heads should assign values to assets according to how risky they are, which will help understand which assets need to be secured most.
6. Perform Testing and Evaluation
Before installing IoT devices, businesses must perform tests or evaluations to understand the vulnerabilities and shortcomings of the devices so they can be secured before being used.
7. Change Default Passwords and Credentials
An easy tip: change the login credentials of all IoT devices before installation. Hackers are often able to infiltrate devices due to the default password still in use.
8. Look at the Data
By observing and analyzing the data produced by IoT devices, businesses will be aware of any suspicious activity occurring. By being informed of this activity and any personal information contained in these devices, appropriate measures can be taken to protect them.
9. Use on Up-to-Date Encryption Protocols
The data flowing from IoT devices should be encrypted with high-end encryption software. The older the software, the easier it is for hackers to infiltrate it.
10. Move From Device-Level Control to Identity-Level Control
IoT devices generally allow multiple users to be connected to a single device. This should be shifted towards an identity-level form of control to help authorize the users of the devices to understand their pattern of behavior which is very useful in helping to protect businesses against any vulnerabilities present.