IoT vulnerabilities expand exponentially with each insecure device

August 6, 2020

While groups involved in cybercrime have different interests and varying targets, there is no doubt that those targeting IoT-dependent systems are benefitting from a plethora of insecure devices and lack of basic security measures.

A recent TrendMicro report discovered that online cybercrime groups are actively researching and disseminating tips on hacking and finding vulnerabilities, creating an environment where even someone new to hacking can easily come up to speed. And while their targets might begin with relatively minor companies or devices, there is a clear escalation path to very serious attacks in the future, across industries. As cyberattackers find consistent ways to monetize their hacks – as opposed to just causing a disruption – severe IoT attacks will intensify unless meaningful cybersecurity measures are implemented now.

For example, within Industry 4.0 and certain infrastructure systems, machinery and operational equipment has been built on the principle of availability, with security taking a secondary emphasis. However, this arrangement leads to vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit to take a system offline, affecting an organisation’s output, finances, and, in some cases, ability to provide necessary services.

Additionally, as 5G rollout continues, the increase in connectivity gives hackers the ability to reach more devices more quickly – and potentially with dangerous consequences. Imagine an attack to an autonomous vehicle or a remote medical device, where not only the security of the device but also the safety of a person is at risk.

The growing market of IoT devices makes it difficult for effective cybersecurity measures to keep up as hackers constantly discover and capitalise on vulnerabilities. However, solutions like Angoka’s are paving the way for a new security standard across industries, creating trust in machine-to-machine communications, protecting a key entry point for would-be attackers.

Going forward, it will be necessary to prioritise security over availability to ensure not only security, but also the safety of the users of the devices.

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