The Internet of Things

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Imagine 5 years from now what technology will look like. Although it isn’t that far down the road it is hard to have an exact mental image of what we think will be “the next big thing” in technology. If we follow Moore’s Law we can see that the rate at which it grows is 264 . The world of tech is constantly changing and expanding in ways that once upon a time were thought to be fictional. The Internet of things is a way to verbalize the coming boom of highly connected devices and systems that promise to transform the way we live and conduct business. This is fantastic for everyone. We can spend less time on trivial tasks and more time focusing on things that matter most—whatever that may be. While 5 years isn’t that far down the road, we can see this “IoT” transition has already been making its way into modern society for a several years now.
With all of this Techie greatness I only see one huge problem. As more and more devices get introduced to us, we begin to get tangled into this web of inter-connectivity. The problem isn’t having too many devices; it’s securing them all. Given the wide diversity of devices that will make up the IoT, there won’t be a single paradigm that will cover everything.
Security experts have been collaborating to find a solution to the challenges that we are facing protecting systems— and the data they hold. Analysts expect that by 2020, there will be 26 billion connected devices; Cisco Systems officials say that number will be more like 50 billion. These will include everything from smartphones and tablets to home appliances, industrial systems, cars, wearable devices, thermostats, light bulbs, surveillance cameras and more, all of them communicating with each other and swapping data.
Companies are coming up with new and unique ways to approach securing your data. For example: The Thread Group is developing an open protocol for creating a wireless mesh network for the home that will support more than 250 devices, which will include encryption for traffic traveling over the network layer.
Simpler steps can be taken, from simply building more security into software and hardware, or even using managed services. It would be the equivalent of putting all of your prized possessions into a safe-deposit box. I think the point here is for everyone to become more aware of security, now that it’s necessary on such a personal level. Users of IoT must take all precautions necessary to uphold personal data. Long gone are the days of using the same password for every account (let’s act like those days never existed).
By: Erica West – Support Engineer
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