With the sudden rise of Connected IoT devices after the arrival of the “Stay at Home” & “Remote Work” culture, the IoT security challenges has also arrived. In the technology world, engineers learn from mistakes, being a new technology the vulnerabilities are yet to be found, when people with bad intentions find them out it puts the whole system at risk.
It is estimated that people would spend around 1.5 Trillion Dollars within the next 3 years, in order to get even the slightest piece of that pie every second business is considering IoT Development. Even when people are conscious more and more about their security. In The rush of creating the most advanced technologies the fastest, companies fail to address the IoT security Concerns. When the company or user finds it out about the vulnerabilities it’s often too late and the attacker has already gotten accessed them and they may have even taken the whole system down.
In order to know how to improve IoT security, we must know what are the IoT security challenges and how do they come into existence especially from a business POV. So let’s get started
What are the IoT Security Challenges?
Wrong Way Of Password Securing
Do you know what is the most common password in the world is “12345” the second common passwords are the birth year of the admin? See ? the most common passwords are the simplest ones that people think would be the hardest to guess. It cants even create even a paper wall against the attacker.
This raises the IoT security risk it gets even more serious when all the other devices in the network have the same passwords and almost identical farmwear and default settings. When the admin also don’t change the passwords that frequently the IoT security risks become inevitable
Embedded Credentials Are Huge No No
Another IoT security challenge arrives when the access credentials are embedded into the code. It lets the hacker directly access the system without much of a complication. There is a malware called Mirai it a most simple and yet relevant example of it. There is a table of 61 most common hard-coded default usernames and passwords that it uses to put in and try one after another until it gets to login into the IoT device from routers to video cameras and video recorders.
In 2016 Mirai help the world’s first 1Tbps DDOS attack that took down AWS including it some of the most popular clients like Netflix and Airbnb. Mirai-based Reaper came back in 2017 as a software as service for criminals that can take down around 20- 30 thousand devices with DDOS attacks.
So Many People Have The Access
One of the most common yet most dangerous IoT Security Concerns is trusting too many people with your IoT access. When you are receiving an IoT system, only you should have overall access to the network. Though most of the time this rule stays stuck in the pages and the people who are so-called “trusted” by the owner get the access. Some of the so-called trusted people may be the reason for your IoT security concerns. When you are the owner only you should have the credentials.
IoT security risks rise again when the user trusts the local network too much that it doesn’t validate another authentication or authorization. Any other new device that can come into the network also won’t require any new authentication from where anyone can access the device. It is one of the most common IoT security challenges.
Large Vulnerable Attack Surface
In an IoT system, the total number of devices and the vulnerabilities are called attack surfaces. So quite naturally the more devices are connected the more IoT security problems arise. All of it comes as a new set of opportunities to the attacker. It might sound inconvenient but reducing the number of devices connected to the network reduces the risk of being vulnerable to the attackers.
Ignoring the security patches and Updates
All of us, even the most technologically wise people can be blamed for these IoT security challenges, When your system is running just fine and an update comes, what do you generally do? You act as if nothing happen and forget everything about it until some security or system problems arrive. People act the same way while updating the software and security patches in the IoT system too. when a respective company finds out a vulnerability in its other systems it tries to resolve it using software updates. After that, they distribute the updates to everyone else.
Here the IoT system owner itself acts as an IoT security challenge and stops its protection layer himself. What we are trying to say is YOU MUST UPDATE THE SYSTEM when an update or security patch is available.
You Don’t Pay For Encryption
If you have used Whatsapp you must have heard about data encryption. It makes the data unreadable between the sender and the receiver so that no one else between can read that. When it device sends the information in a non-encrypted normal format all the data here gets vulnerable to anyone in between. Here anyone technologically capable person can get into the network and obtain sensitive data such as login credentials and even card details.
Using secure protocols (HTTPS) using an SSL certificate lets you encrypt any data that will be sent by your device to the server. though they might look like expense in the beginning it is worth it. other IoT security challenges arise when people save the password in another connected device connected to the network to remember it if someone gains its access he can easily break into the system. In order to make it secure one should pay for the SSL certificates. Not storing the password in any stored devices and using API for putting more security to the network.
Companies are Often Not Responsible Enough
Although they should not companies sometimes fail to take immediate action when the vulnerabilities are found. As we said before the company sends the updates when the vulnerabilities are found. If the company fails to take immediate action and build a security update, it makes the system vulnerable to its failure from the user end when the companies fail to develop the update in time it makes the device vulnerable to attacks. it’s very rare but yet it takes place it brings some IoT security concerns.
Lack of Notification Feature In IoT Devices
If you have never owned an IoT device you may not know but the IoT devices work in very low power to make the system cheaper it often does not have so many notification systems. So when an unauthorized login takes place it shows no different than usual the system keeps working just as usual. It also does not shows any signals or notifications. This gives the attacker long enough time to take full control of the network and makes the mitigation even harder.
In order to resolve IoT security risk, the device should come with an in-build system that lets you know when there is some unusual activities or security is disabled or it is taking more power than usual.
It was probably the most obvious one but yet most probably you might have never thought of that. Even in the 21 Century people don’t include IoT devices and other gadgets in their most valuable items. They keep them laying around here and there. Have you ever seen them doing that with their cash or with jewelry? No right?
If attackers get physical access to a device, they can open the device and attach the hardware. For example, by reading the contents of the memory components directly, any protecting software can be bypassed. Furthermore, the device may have to debug contacts, accessible after opening up the device, that provide an attacker with additional possibilities.
physical attacks have an impact on a single device and require physical interaction. Since it is not possible to perform these attacks in masse from the Internet, we do not recognize this as one of the biggest security problems, but it is also one of the IoT security challenges that you might face.
IoT security Problems Can Also be Caused By The UI
Another IoT security problems arrive when the UI is not handled properly unlike the other IoT security challenges above where the IoT Development Company is making everything here the user gets some of the system access. As most of the time user is nontechnical person they often fail to optimize and configure their systems properly. So a risk of vulnerability can come from anywhere.
Here you can see it is evident that the top security problems are without a doubt related to attack surface exposed ends and access related. We really hope you understood what are the best practices for securing IoT and why it’s okay to pay a little extra bit to invest in a more secure protocol.
Another way of mitigating the IoT security challenges To make it harder for attackers to reach the device physically, devices should be physically secured. Finally, if a device is compromised it should reject programs it also shows some kind of notification saying that, and notify its user that something is wrong.
Well, for now, we really hope you liked our article thankyou for reading
Have a great day