How to be safe with IoT?

 How to be safe with IoT?
IOT device defines as any object connected to the internet. Examples include TV, Smart cars, Cameras, Door locks (including ones with Bluetooth), Medical Devices, Lights, Fitness Bands., Washing Machines, Coffee Maker, Other Daily appliances. Basically, if you have any home appliance is connected to the Internet connection, and then it becomes an IOT device.
 
IoT Security is trending technology now –a –days. According to many researchers and technicians, IoT will have a great impact on our daily lives. There are now multiple devices connecting to the internet and working as an IoT device. You can see an applied example of such devices at malls, corporate offices, scientific labs, universities, homes and other places. And now it’s increasing day by day at each and every place of our surroundings. This expansion of human capability and also of technology shows that what we have been thinking as a fantasy will turn into reality in very few upcoming years. But as every coin has two sides, IoT has some pitfalls, too. But these pitfalls can be solved in future.
 
Let’s take an example here to understand one of the snags of IoT device.
 
Suppose there is a person named X. He has applied this IoT technology on his home door lock. The door lock is connected to his mobile with Bluetooth connectivity chip. The person X has a passcode to his door lock. So he does not need any key to be always with him. Though he forgets key at some place, then he can have access to his home by using this passcode.
 
One day, the person, X, arrive at home and he noticed that his access has denied by his door lock. That passcode is not working anymore. He came to know that his door lock passcode is hacked by some random person, say Y, and now that person Y is demanding a hundred bucks from person X. Now person X has nothing to do but give him money to unlock it.    
                
The hacker, Y, can demand anything and also can access person X’s bank account or use his security account number for money swipe. 
 
A few days ago, many industries were get affected by Ransomware like WannaCry, Petya. In last week a new member is introduced in this type named Locky. These viruses can affect the whole system at the tremendous amount. Henceforth, in future, such types of viruses can affect IoT devices, too.  Nobody wants to get locked in and give money to a person (hacker) for this. 
 
What I want to instruct is that security updates must be installed on every IoT device. 
 
Security in IoT will play a vital role in upcoming years. Our daily devices will turn into IoT devices and thus, security techniques and updates are crucial components of these electronic devices. Otherwise, our devices will get hacked and daily normal life will become nothing but just a mess. 
 
IoT security is not available in most of the devices. There are not much-needed security protocols which have been put in place to protect these devices. As mentioned above, every coin has two sides; there is also the weak side of this. But some measures can be taken into consideration to improve IoT security of the devices. There are some simple things one can do to reinforce their IoT Security. 
 
Following are the things which must take into consideration.
 
  • Change the default username and passcode, and don’t share details with anyone. Change it for every month for better security purpose.
  • Must install all the required and verified security updates.
  • Don’t connect an IoT device to any open networks available in public.
  • Do not use refurbished products because there will be high chances of a virus implanted in them.
  • Don’t buy devices from untrusted sources in the market or even from online E- commerce sites. Before purchasing, make sure it is reliable or verified.
  • Turn off the devices when not in use.
Authored By - Asmita Patil
TCS Cyber Security Practice
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