Vodafone highlights importance of IoT security

Vodafone highlights importance of IoT security [Image: chombosan via iStock]

Vodafone has issued a new whitepaper addressing the issue of securing the Internet of Things (IoT).

The company said that its 2016 IoT Barometer found that 18 per cent of businesses said that concern about security breaches was a barrier to the wider adoption of IoT in their organisation.

Meanwhile, 30 per cent of businesses reported they were changing or restricting the scope of IoT projects in order to limit security risks. Vodafone said that more than half of companies it talked to said they are now more concerned about IoT security risks than they were in the past.

Vodafone explained that IoT data “originates at the very edge of the infrastructure, far beyond the protection of the corporate perimeter, in remote devices like cars or security cameras”. If a breach happens at any stage in its journey to the data centre, sensitive data is then put at risk.

It’s therefore important for IoT providers to secure the data as it moves from the device’s SIM through the wireless and core networks, to the central management platform and the data centres where it’s hosted.

Vodafone explained that data protection is done through encrypting that information, which happens by isolating systems from each other and by restricting access through authentication and authorisation controls. Providers should ensure they’re offering at least this level of security in their IoT infrastructures.

For example, Vodafone highlighted how it verifies the legitimacy of devices through cryptographic keys in the SIM. It also authenticates users attempting to connect to its web portal using two-factor authentication.

End-to-end security is a vital factor for businesses, with 76 per cent saying security should be treated as an end-to-end solution, according to the 2016 barometer. A further 91 per cent of companies said it’s important that they worked with an end-to-end security provider for the IoT, so providers should be aware of this when offering their solutions.