8 Tips for Faultless IoT Network Security

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8 Tips for Faultless IoT Network Security

IoT security is as important as ever. Here is some advice to keep your networks secure at both the network and the device levels.

· IoT Zone ·
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Billions of connected devices streaming real-time personal and enterprise data with speculative security assurances have finally gained needed attention and are steering toward being the most focused area in IoT until 2022. As of now, 80% of devices in the IoT network lack sufficient security fortification, leaving critical data assets unattended and more vulnerable to cyber attacks.

As an enterprise service provider, you can still lower your risk if basics are duly pitched and advertised. While getting the end user on board will surely help, here’s what your collaboration with the user must do.

Follow Password Aesthetics

Interestingly, half the battle to fortify your network is won if passwords are smartly created and regularly updated. Here’s what you ought to do:

  • Have strong passwords — that is, use a complicated combination of alphabetical, numerical, and special characters. Make sure the entire password string doesn’t have a literal meaning, no matter what spoken language you have used.

  • And have them everywhere — lock every device with an exclusive password. Be it mobile devices or fixed equipment, have an exclusive password for each one of them. Use a pattern that you can remember easily and that makes it easy to update them all together.

Wi-Fi networks with weak passwords are potential channels of illegitimate traffic and should be stringently protected with strong passwords.

Sadly, in spite of being a hugely impactful protection layer, passwords are overlooked. Don’t let that happen to your IoT network.

Disconnect the Devices When Not In Use

Aside from devices that need uninterrupted internet streaming, identify others that need only occasional connectivity and can be switched off without affecting the overall network.  Unchecked, rigorous web connectivity offers a seamless passage for hackers to get through. By using devices in an off/on mode, it is easier to disrupt illegitimate access. TVs, microphones, refrigerators, cameras, coffee makers, door locks, and more equipment in an IoT network must be turned off if not needed for a continuous stretch while you are traveling.

Have an Exclusive Network Channel for the IoT

A leaner network with a limited number of connected equipment is less vulnerable to external threats versus an IoT setup sharing a public Wi-Fi. Ask your ISP for an exclusive network layer dedicated to the IoT network. Segmentation always helps, keeping your critical data streaming secluded from the usual web access by a number of users. A secluded network will be accessible to your home users or anyone else you want to include. It’s a step toward dismaying, questionable security in Internet of Things streaming.

Guard Closely With Regular Tracking

The ability to track a device and capture responses instantly is the underlying principle for IoT functionality. Apart from sharing functional data, tracking is the most reliable activity to ensure network security. The location of every connected device, its current online status, and the users who attempted access (and thus assessing the overall flow of traffic) should be thoroughly performed. A detailed look into the connected devices and their uses is highly critical for any business — while identifying alien devices seeking any kind of access can be instantly highlighted. IoT would be mostly streaming sensitive data, and patching up devices becomes more than imperative.

Update, Update, Update

From user expectation to security threats, everything has gone agile — and enterprises need to revamp their security practices if regular updating is ignored. Besides adding application features, installing patches for bugs, and resolving security issues quickly, software updates are a must for seamless IoT performance. These patches address deep security concerns and can be put on automatic update mode, too. While everything is connected to the internet, using outdated software applications makes it easy for protection layer failure.

Getting in touch with your manufacturer and probing about the latest versions and whether or not your devices are compatible will always help!

Encrypt Your Data

Most of your IoT devices are extensively sharing your personal data. For an example, a device attached to your car is streaming your real-time activity, including your daily routes, the stopovers, the time at which you leave home and reach the office, driving habits, and much more. Such information, if not protected, could invite criminal attacks towards vehicular theft.

Encryption sounds highly complicated to a layman user, but you can’t proceed without it. Make use of commercial encryption tools and put protection in place now!

Don’t Use Personal Devices at Work

As the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) movement has started encouraging more offices to let employees work on their personal equipment, that temptation can push you into an unsafe zone of data theft. BYOD is a terrific move for the enterprises to cut down on maintenance costs, but you are actually exposing your device to the public network. Of course, you can rely on your office’s network security, but sharing your personal data is still risky!

The idea of segmenting the IoT network and the devices are same as discussed in #3. Don’t use your IoT devices for streaming in public networks. Have separate equipment for personal and professional use. If cost is an issue, try using cheaper alternatives where data capturing and analyzing is less critical.

Check User Authentication

Assigning roles and responsibilities across different lines of businesses is one of the most critical tasks. As an enterprise, you are always at risk of unwanted data exposure, and controlling that risk begins with legitimate users. Clearly demarcate access privileges for every participant while reserving high-level authorization access for limited users only.

Account Takeover may quickly take a toll over smooth IoT streaming if issues of unregulated system access are left unattended. One effective solution here is to associate with IoT solution providers that offer detailed insight into the dos and don’ts of role assigning.

iot security, network security

Published at DZone with permission of Cray Styris . See the original article here.

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