The Internet age has helped us tackle the mundane activities of paying bills, traditional shopping, making reservations all seem easy. Whether it is checking weather forecasts or stock prices – they are now performed by the click of a mouse without physically leaving the desk. This shows the true power of the Internet age. Our day-to-day life has become much easier and standing in queues, jostling through the crowds and the traffic has become passé for these activities.
To add to all this luxury, now just imagine a world of smart homes with smart doors(amongst other things) and smart appliances like smart refrigerators, – how would that be? How would it be if the coffee maker can turn itself at a given time(‘smart coffeemaker’), the lights can turn themselves on or off at the stated time (‘smart light’) and the sprinklers can be turned on/off from anywhere(‘smart sprinkler’), and the list goes on. Is it all a possibility? Yes, with ‘IoT’(‘Internet of Things’).
What is IoT?:
The ‘Internet of Things’ can be defined in two terms – connect everything and monitor. This is done by placing a sensor (or software) in devices and applications which have the capability to transmit data over the Internet infrastructure with minimal human interaction. Everything is given an IP address (thanks be the increase in IP address space) and we connect seamlessly to perform ‘smart’ activities. Now that everything is connected and we are leading the magical life by turning buttons from a remote location are there any pros and cons to IoT?
Pros of IoT:
IoT promises to help us lead comfortable lives and monitor different things from a remote location. Data from refrigerators, cameras, lights, cars, social media sites, cell phones, TVs, cameras and everything is stored, monitored, recorded and re-used to better the future.
IoT can also be useful in these sectors:
- Energy management
- Home automation
- Environment monitoring
- Infrastructure management (Internet of Things)
Bane of IoT:
Granted, that IoT connected devices do a lot of good, but still there is plenty of data at play here and this a malicious person’s heaven. According to the Symantec’s website, these are some of the risks that are possible for IoT devices:
- Denial of service attacks – DDOS attacks might be common form of attack against IoT devices. This might bring down the entire IoT network.
- Weakening perimeters – Since IoT networks are still in its infancy, security is still an afterthought. If one the IoT devices in the perimeter is hacked, it could lead to more security damages to an organization.
- Inadvertent breaches – If information is mistakenly leaked from one or more IoT devices, it could cause harm to the corporate environment.
(Securing the Internet of Things – where’s the risk?, 02) (Internet of Things: How Much are We Exposed to Cyber Threats?, 2015)
The ‘Internet of Things’ is a reality and will continue to be a bigger reality. The key is to balance it well, stay connected without losing your privacy.
Bibliography - Internet of Things. (n.d.). Retrieved March 16, 2015, from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_of_Things Internet of Things: How Much are We Exposed to Cyber Threats? (2015, Jan 26). Retrieved March 16, 2015, from infosecinstitute.com: http://resources.infosecinstitute.com/internet-things-much-exposed-cyber-threats/ Securing the Internet of Things - where's the risk? (02, Jan 2014). Retrieved March 16, 2015,from symantec.com: http://www.symantec.com/connect/blogs/securing-internet-things-wheres-risk
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