The Internet connects computers around the world, and these devices have transformed over the years. From giant systems that fill an entire room, to the Internet of Things, the Internet also connects us with cyber criminals; unfortunately, you will be a target of their activities, frequently without being aware.
Now that practically every device we use – from printers to thermostats to medical equipment – is connected to the Internet, the security of ‘things’ has become a scarily large topic. In fact, by 2020, 26 billion objects will be connected to the internet. Unless we can quickly adapt to the Internet of Things, the next compromise will likely be on a massive scale and could affect the most intimate levels of our lives.
Today you may tend to the security of maybe several devices. However, with the Internet of Things, you will add your car, all of the home and even wearable devices. These talented bad guys will find a way to compromise the system and then you will need an update. Most people will never update these Internet of Things devices and herein lies the real issue. Securing a system is about constantly being able to adapt to the changing threat environment. We have a hard enough time updating all our current applications, now add 30 more devices from 10 different vendors and you see the problem.
At this year’s Infosecurity Europe, Lancope CTO, TK Keanini, looked at some of the issues faced and used industry-specific examples to discuss how attendees can secure the Internet of Things and exposed devices in their respective industries. For example, how do we stop unfriendly nation-states from taking down our power grid? And how can we prevent Internet-connected medical devices from malfunctioning and putting lives at risk?
“Today’s reality is that almost any electronic device we can think of can be connected to the Internet, whether we realise it or not,” said Lancope CTO TK Keanini. “This creates an extremely challenging and pervasive security issue for organisations across all industries. What my session aims to do is break down the seemingly insurmountable obstacle of securing the Internet of Things into a more realistic and manageable effort by focusing on defensive patterns that are applicable to your specific sector.”