IoT - Internet of Things Security
IoT security is the technology area concerned with safeguarding connected devices and networks in the internet of things (IoT).
IoT involves adding internet connectivity to a system of interrelated computing devices, mechanical and digital machines, objects, animals and/or people. Each "thing" is provided a unique identifier and the ability to automatically transfer data over a network. Allowing devices to connect to the internet opens them up to a number of serious vulnerabilities if they are not properly protected.
IoT security has become the subject of scrutiny after a number of high-profile incidents where a common IoT device was used to infiltrate and attack the larger network. Implementing security measures is critical to ensuring the safety of networks with IoT devices connected to them.
IoT security hacks can happen in any industry, from smart home to a manufacturing plant to a connected car. The severity of impact depends greatly on the individual system, the data collected and/or the information it contains.
An attack disabling the brakes of a connected car, for example, or on a connected health device, such as an insulin pump hacked to administer too much medication to a patient, can be life-threatening. Likewise, an attack on a refrigeration system housing medicine that is monitored by an IoT system can ruin the viability of a medicine if temperatures fluctuate. Similarly, an attack on critical infrastructure -- an oil well, energy grid or water supply -- can be disastrous.
So, a robust IoT security portfolio must allow protecting devices from all types of vulnerabilities while deploying the security level that best matches application needs. Cryptography technologies are used to combat communication attacks. Security services are offered for protecting against lifecycle attacks. Isolation measures can be implemented to fend off software attacks. And, finally, IoT security should include tamper mitigation and side-channel attack mitigation technologies for fighting physical attacks of the chip.
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F.A.Q. about IoT - Internet of Things Security
What are the key requirements of IoT Security?
The key requirements for any IoT security solution are:
- Device and data security, including authentication of devices and confidentiality and integrity of data
- Implementing and running security operations at IoT scale
- Meeting compliance requirements and requests
- Meeting performance requirements as per the use case
What do connected devices require to participate in the IoT Securely?
To securely participate in the IoT, each connected device needs a unique identification – even before it has an IP address. This digital credential establishes the root of trust for the device’s entire lifecycle, from initial design to deployment to retirement.
Why is device authentication necessary for the IoT?
Strong IoT device authentication is required to ensure connected devices on the IoT can be trusted to be what they purport to be. Consequently, each IoT device needs a unique identity that can be authenticated when the device attempts to connect to a gateway or central server. With this unique ID in place, IT system administrators can track each device throughout its lifecycle, communicate securely with it, and prevent it from executing harmful processes. If a device exhibits unexpected behavior, administrators can simply revoke its privileges.
Why is secure manufacturing necessary for IoT devices?
IoT devices produced through unsecured manufacturing processes provide criminals opportunities to change production runs to introduce unauthorized code or produce additional units that are subsequently sold on the black market.
One way to secure manufacturing processes is to use hardware security modules (HSMs) and supporting security software to inject cryptographic keys and digital certificates and to control the number of units built and the code incorporated into each.
Why is code signing necessary for IoT devices?
To protect businesses, brands, partners, and users from software that has been infected by malware, software developers have adopted code signing. In the IoT, code signing in the software release process ensures the integrity of IoT device software and firmware updates and defends against the risks associated with code tampering or code that deviates from organizational policies.
In public key cryptography, code signing is a specific use of certificate-based digital signatures that enables an organization to verify the identity of the software publisher and certify the software has not been changed since it was published.
What is IoT PKI?
Today there are more things (devices) online than there are people on the planet! Devices are the number one users of the Internet and need digital identities for secure operation. As enterprises seek to transform their business models to stay competitive, rapid adoption of IoT technologies is creating increasing demand for Public Key Infrastructures (PKIs) to provide digital certificates for the growing number of devices and the software and firmware they run.
Safe IoT deployments require not only trusting the devices to be authentic and to be who they say they are, but also trusting that the data they collect is real and not altered. If one cannot trust the IoT devices and the data, there is no point in collecting, running analytics, and executing decisions based on the information collected.
Secure adoption of IoT requires:
- Enabling mutual authentication between connected devices and applications
- Maintaining the integrity and confidentiality of the data collected by devices
- Ensuring the legitimacy and integrity of the software downloaded to devices
- Preserving the privacy of sensitive data in light of stricter security regulations