IoT security threats are a major challenge in the technology-driven industry. One of the biggest security threats of IoT is data loss. The technology was built to ease out the functioning or process of an organization, though relying blindly upon that isn’t easy at all. There is ‘n’ number of instances in the past when IoT had seen the ground when it came to securing the data.
IoT has come out as a great source of productivity and time-saving. It replaced a lot of manual tasks that were taking a big chunk of your time. The biggest and most common example these days is the search engine assistance devices like Google Home and Amazon Echo.
You can remotely switch on or off a particular device placed at your home or office, but guaranteeing that the task will happen, depend upon how secure is your connection. Also, while using any internet service including emails, could get you a potential virus in your inbox.
Let’s discuss the top 10 leading IoT security threats that you should consider while using it in 2020.
Spam emails are one of the oldest types of threats to you your personal belongings. An individual receives thousands of emails daily that are quite important and valuable ones. He/she might be having some business meet or upcoming event or even there could be a transaction verification mail. All such communications are important and need attention at the earliest.
What to do: Keep all security measures ON while using your emails. The best way to do so is to understand the subject lines of your emails before opening them. If you find anything fake in it, delete that mail immediately. If you received an email that says something like “urgent” or “important” but you are not confident about the same, make sure to ask the sender over call or message before moving ahead with it.
2. Remote Access Data Theft
IoT device security threats are mostly found with wireless or digital devices. Have you ever seen bulb mounted on a socket in your room, functioning like crazy? Never, indeed! But how about putting that on a smart plug or using a smart bulb instead that gets its commands over the Wi-Fi network? It is just an example, and you can relate this to any other wireless device, especially your CCTV security system.
What to do: A secure network should be understood before implementation. If you can control that bulb from your Smartphone, there are chances that someone may get over your Wi-Fi network and let your device force function. Always go for the most secure system that can withstand the most advanced security system.
3. Threat Increases with Number of Devices
Smart devices are easily accessible to everyone. Manufacturers are trying to play gimmick and create an ecosystem of their devices around you. An ecosystem forms when you use more than one device of the same brand/OS and get them to sync together for all transactions, mail exchanges, documents, and every single thing. This practice gives hackers multiple gateways to enter into your confidential data and put you in a harmful situation.
What to do: Forming a network of devices is convenient, but it comes at the cost of your data’s security. Keep track of your passwords and keep changing them for good. IoT cybersecurity threat is dynamic and can’t be underestimated. Make sure if you are forming an ecosystem of devices, you are keeping your confidential data outside of it.
4. Malfunctioned Car ECU
Connected cars are the latest victim of IoT security challenges. As said, anything digital can be hacked and requires strong antidotes that may cost expensive. Your car’s smart system establishes a connection with your Smartphone to work. This way, you are giving a to and fro access to both the devices. If someone has entered your car’s ECU, it may take a toll on the data on your Smartphone.
What to do: The best way to overcome this IoT device security threat is to keep the connections minimum. You can use your Smartphone instead of screen display purposes and calls.
5. Easy to Access Passwords
Passwords are like locks to your personal belongings. They keep securing your stuff till the time an intruder isn’t trying to steal it. Getting access to your stuff is directly proportional to the strength of the lock or password. Becoming a hacked password victim is not new, and people have lost a lot of data in the past due to that. Not just the email passwords, but ATM PINs have also been hacked for fraud deeds.
What to do: Passwords like abc123, password, mymail, 123456, etc. are the easiest to hack. A few repeated efforts can unlock your treasure to someone not worthy. A strong password is a good combination of alphanumeric and special character that isn’t easy to relate to.
ALSO READ: 5 Common Website Design Myths Debunked
6. Malfunctioning RFID
Your credit and debit cards work with RFID signals. This technology is recently introduced and requires just a tap on the bank’s transaction machine and no pin to be entered. It seems to be convenient but has huge drawbacks attached to it. Anybody with such transaction machines can tap on your wallet or your back to get the money transferred into his/her account without your concern.
What to do: Get your old wallet replaced by an RFID protected wallet. There are quite good options available in the market with this facility to choose from. Also, talk to your bank and ask them to keep the tap-to-pay limit at minimum for your account. Some banks have the fixed capping of tap-to-pay transactions, which is a good move.
7. Fake Apps
Google Play Store and Apple App Store have millions of apps for your smart devices. And hence, a lot of companies are developing these apps on different niches. People emphasis apps more than the web as they are fast and create better engagement. But there are a lot of fake and fraudulent apps out there. Stealing your data isn’t a tough task for these apps as they are projected to be highly beneficial but later on keep on data on risk.
What to do: It’s a matter of understanding that downloading any random app isn’t the best way to engage yourself. Check out for reviews and comments if it’s a new app, better to avoid that, or check with knowledgeable people in your surroundings.
8. Poor Authentication Process
Authentication is an important step in transactional, verification, or registration communications. Every data and asset carries different values, and hence, they should also have a different authentication process. Verifying a new subscriber to your channel and authenticating a transaction are two different things that require different actions.
What to do: A week’s authentication should be done in multiple steps sensing the criticality of the task. For transactional authentication, an OTP, followed by a PIN, makes a double check on the transactional authentication. Similarly, for any email password changes or in similar scenarios, it’s good to have a strong password that includes alphanumeric and special characters.
9. Security Testing Glitch
IoT vulnerabilities are often regarded to be manual or human-made and machine-generated. Testing an antidote for top IoT security threats must be carried with due diligence. It requires multiple levels of testing that check every aspect of the system functioning and from all dimensions. Lack of proper knowledge and process can cause a big loss.
What to do: If you are producing software or a system to function as a vaccine for viruses or security threats, make sure to follow the set path of testing. Have thorough knowledge about the IoT security challenges and abide by the flow chart of the same. Keep in mind that neglecting any step could be hazardous.
10. Micro Attacks
These attacks sometimes become more dangerous than the bigger ones. While using smart devices, the browser transmits and receives a lot of data that include important as well as phishy content. It may also include viruses and other threats to your data. You really can’t trace them always as they are very small in size and attack a particular section of their size.
What to do: Untrusted websites are the main reason for such activities. Always try to get over such activities and avoid clicking on any random link. Your device and data are always on toll, and you have to take such steps cautiously.