While the Internet of Things (IoT) brings numerous advantages, one of the biggest challenges is the threat it poses to cybersecurity infrastructure. IoT devices are low-powered and connect to devices resulting in a wave of threats and data breaches raising the stakes high for cyber security damage.
As per a recent report by IOT Analytics “State of IoT 2022: Number of connected IoT devices growing 18% to 14.4 billion globally”, there will be 27.1 billion connected IoT devices by 2025. Here are a few mitigation methods businesses need to adopt in order to prevent cyberattacks due to IoT.
Identify and Understand Vulnerabilities
Prevention is the primary defense against any cyberattack. The cyber security team within an organization needs to know its attack surface while understanding any vulnerabilities in end-point devices remotely and on-site. The sensors and networks that bind the IoT network together should be continuously assessed for any security weaknesses. At the same time, organizations need to be aware of the common threats affecting IoT systems.
Establish Effective Password Management
With growing data volume, its protection from cyber threats is challenging. The organization should deploy a secure password management plan especially when majority of the devices are integrated into IoT systems. Secure processes like Single-Sign-On (SSO) and Multi-Factor-Authentication (MFA) should be utilized to allow controlled access to IoT programs. Devices or software lacking a secured network should not be integrated into the wider network.
Operate Existing Framework and Technology
When planning an effective and comprehensive IoT cybersecurity strategy, organizations need to draw a plan from the existing guidelines and standards. This will allow the team to easily adhere to compliant navigation through the threats since it is well aware of the standard procedures.
Integration of machine learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) will help the cybersecurity team to improve their threat monitoring ways and respond to them.
Third-party IoT Risk Minimization
It is crucial to take the necessary measures to mitigate IoT risks that are beyond the control of management, by conducting effective due diligence on third-party IoT producers and vendors. Organizations need to ensure that the IoT producers and vendors understand it’s the impact of IoT on cybersecurity. This risk management program will ensure that third-party vendors can be updated and protected against novel emerging threats.
IoT Systems Compartmentalization
It is vital to have effective containment measures to ensure protection and limit the impact of a successful cyberattack. Utilizing a loosely-couple IoT systems approach will protect the IT infrastructure and ensures that the threat won’t spread to the entire business organization if one of the devices is compromised. At the same time, multi-layered security measures and tools can be adopted around certain networks which act as digital fences mitigating the impact of the hack.
Measure the Threat Landscape
Unpatched software which is void of the latest update gives the attackers an opportunity to attack the software, gradually corrupting the organization’s network and assets. According to a recent report by Secureworks, “2022 State of the Threat Report “ 52% of the ransomware incidents occurred due to unpatched remote services. Organizations need to keep a note of the devices which might be a threat to their infrastructure and need to establish a process to identify where patches are needed. This will allow the cybersecurity teams to identify vulnerabilities that need immediate action, thus creating better visibility around the security needs and drawing urgent attention to funding needed to take up proactive measures.
IoT holds extensive benefits simplifying costs and providing convenience to individuals. With the flow of data between channels, there is always an increased risk of susceptibility to threats. Organizations need to take appropriate preventive measures to manage these threats with effective mitigation plans to ensure that the IoT networks are operating in a secure network.