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Securing IoT devices

Securing IoT devices 

It is crucial to note according to the Gartner’s release that the security concern is not just limited to the devices alone but attention must be given to information security, information technology security, operational technology security and physical security. As such today’s executives are faced with a decision regarding the future of security in their company.

With this security risk in mind many companies who are IoT security providers are working on developing products and offerings that can mitigate the risk and protect connected devices. One such company is Symantec who has recently announced that it is protecting more than one billion Internet of Things devices ranging from cars to televisions, smart meters to infrastructure.

“As IoT innovation and adoption continues to grow, so has the opportunity for new cyber security risks.  This is the next frontier. In the automotive industry, hackers can literally steer the car and ‘hit the brakes’ from their keyboards,” said Shankar Somasundaram, Senior Director of Internet of Things Security, Symantec. “Symantec is partnering with manufacturers in the automotive, industrial control, and semiconductor industries, in addition to our work in healthcare and retail markets.”

In order to keep hackers from steering your car into a building or a lake, Symantec has developed an approach that is comprehensive and covers authentication, device security, analytics and management to help devices and not just cars from becoming hacked, tracked and electronically hijacked.  

So how is being done? This leading IoT security provider has approached this from three different areas:

  • Device Security: which protects IoT devices by locking down the software embedded in the device to protect against zero-day attacks and prevent compromise
  • IoT Roots of Trust and Device Certificates: by working with some of the world’s largest chip providers and cryptographic library partners, to embed security at the hardware level to create new “Roots of Trust,” so devices can safely encrypt and authenticate information
  • Code Signing Certificates and Secure App Services: by ensuring that code running on IoT devices is authorized through code signing certificates and a cloud based signing-as-a-service for a number of code formats relevant to IoT

Symantec and the other IoT security providers have invested heavily in solutions to protect consumers from hacks and attacks but with the prediction of reaching 25 billion connected devices by 2020, will this be enough? Undoubtedly, Internet of Things will continue to be a huge target while security will remain at the top of the agenda. The only way to come out on top always is to stay at least one step above the hackers.

 Source: Symantec, Gartner

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