Every day, the market is flooded with new and innovative smart devices, devices which consumers are adopting at a dizzying rate in order to make their lives easier and more connected. Generally, these smart devices fall into three categories: sensors, actuators, and gateways that can work separately or in collaboration with other systems, such as desktop software, mobile apps, or cloud-based solutions.
As great as these IoT gadgets are, the fact remains that owning them can make you more vulnerable to cyber attacks. Indeed, the weaknesses in IoT designs are being exploited by amateur hackers, professional cyber-criminals, and possibly even state actors.
That’s why, in order to protect the security and safety of your online presence, you need a solid IoT design. Read on for a summary of the most important factors when it comes to IoT security design.
The seven most important components in a secure IoT design
A collection of intellectual property is referred to as ‘data’. In an IoT environment, consumers and vendors will classify data in a variety of ways based on its sensitivity. By putting data into a certain group, we can apply the right level of protection.
It’s important to keep in mind that the definition of sensitive data varies by jurisdiction. As such, referring to the data classification in the jurisdiction when designing IoT design is critical.
Despite the proliferation of cloud-based solutions, physical devices will always be included in an IoT ecosystem. This means that IoT systems will always be vulnerable. Side-channel attacks, for example, make it possible to extract encryption keys. Natural events such as temperature fluctuations, humidity, and lightning strikes are possible dangers as well.
The good news is that there are numerous ways that users can protect physical devices from damage. Consider adding protective casings and mounting as well as additional shielding to devices with higher security requirements in order to protect against side-channel attacks. Also, If a device has an administration port, verify whether it has solid credential management and access controls.
Secure operating system
An operating system can be used by a cybercriminal to infiltrate an IoT system. This means that protecting against cyber threats can be as simple as hardening an operating system by removing unnecessary connections and restricting system visibility. Just as with safeguarding a physical device, you can start protecting an operating system by limiting unnecessary access points, protocols, and services. Also, set permissions so that only authorized users have access to the root file system.
It’s also a good idea to ensure that an operating system’s components are always up to date. In addition if necessary, restrict application access as appropriate. Also, an administrator can create a separate, private account with access to the operating system’s files that no one else has. More importantly, only allow root file access if it’s imperative.
A credential is simply proof of a particular entity’s identity that can take many different forms and be used to obtain access to data. One of the easiest ways to acquire access to data or access – whether authorized or unauthorized – is by using a compromised credential. This means that passwords, digital security certificates, and other types of credentials must be stored safely in order to be effective.
Using a Secure Access Module or a trusted key store is a great way to keep credentials safe. Also, try to use two-factor authentication for all critical accounts whenever possible.
Using an encryption service is a critical step toward keeping your IoT system secure. That’s why it’s critical that you utilize the most secure encryption algorithm possible.
To maintain privacy and comply with data protection requirements in today’s day and age, any data that may be traced back to an individual must be encrypted. As such, service providers must use some form of encryption to maintain the integrity of their service.
The compatibility of an encryption method and its data classification is the most crucial factor to consider when picking one. In most cases, encryption technologies provide numerous levels of security. For example, less secure encryption technologies include FTO and Telnet. Regardless of what encryption method you select, make sure it allows you to replace encryption keys safely over the internet.
An IoT device’s network connection is what allows it to communicate with the rest of the world via various network interfaces. It goes without saying that these entry points must be safeguarded. This means keeping to a minimum the number of possible routes into the gadget. It’s also a good idea to make sure your IoT device connects only when it’s needed.
Keep an eye on your network firewall as well. Install properly configured firewalls on all of your IoT devices to reduce the risk of unauthorized access and verify every incoming connection to ensure it comes from a trusted source.
Software update policy
There are different types of software in a device, including firmware, FLASH data, FPGA configuration, and so on. As such, software updates are required to address any bugs or security flaws on a device.
Every manufacturer should, in theory, deliver on a regular basis remote software upgrades for their devices. Alternatively, software updates should be made available via an official website for users to download and install on their own.
Finally, make sure to activate the anti-rollback option whenever possible. This feature is critical in preventing hackers from exploiting flaws in previous software versions.
Designer IoT is always a good fit
Cyberattacks are inconvenient, troubling and expensive for consumers. Similarly, they can also harm a commercial organization’s reputation and bottom line.
A solid IoT design can be achieved by focusing on the components mentioned above. No matter what kind of IoT devices and solutions you use as part of your IoT design, privacy and internet safety should always remain top of mind.