Most common IoT threats and preventions
The Internet of Things has brought in so many positive changes in today’s life, but that does not negate that there are some drawbacks with it. People all over the world are concerned with the security vulnerabilities that IoT has projected in everyday life. Everyday objects and people now have a swift way of sending and receiving information on the internet. That alone significantly increases the security threats in people’s life, with the uncertainty of who may be prying on their privacy.
As you hope that the IoT does not have negative repercussions on you, it is still necessary to keep abreast with the common threats that could find you, along with how you can prevent them. The following should help you get started:
Physical access attack
Physical access attack is perhaps the most common threat of IoT. At any given time, someone may grab your device, change things up, say with an ‘improved version of an application,’ and then take over control from there. This is not only invasive, but also deceptive. The worst bit about this threat is that you cannot control the device’s location and the people who can access it, which means that you cannot evade this threat.
You can, however, you can find a prevention measure in some of the following ways:
Monitor your setup and authentication
When acquiring a new device, you always work to ensure that it contacts the server correctly for the first time. At this stage, be keen to verify whether it is your device that hits your server, and not another one, say from a hacker. You also need to ensure that when you are communicating with other of your devices in your server, you are reaching out to your computer and not that of an unsolicited third party.
It is not uncommon for malicious third parties to use power outages as a means to attack someone or a company. The problem is that power issues can happen legitimately without a suspicious mastermind behind the occurrence. Since power outages can occur to anyone at any time, consider using USB batteries like most people. They are much better in reducing the legitimate power outages that can happen to you. This way, you can easily analyze a power outage as either suspicious or legitimate.
While Wi-Fi has become a ready solution to people’s internet connectivity problems, it does not come without its challenges. Ideally, consumer-grade Wi-Fi network is the most commonly used by IoT devices. Rightfully so, it is cheap to use, works all the time and is fast and convenient. However, it is also true the network connectivity has several outages, which are legitimate.
Instead of letting the legitimate outages be a loophole for security threats, consider getting a backup network for those uncertain times. The goal is to have a backup plan that can pick automatically when the need arises. You can opt for slower network connectivity like the cellular network, which is less prone to outages.
Unsecured server processes
Even though a computer and an IoT device are connected to the internet, they do differ. Even in their differences, you need to employ the same level of effort in securing your IoT devices as you do your computers. This goes mostly for the server processes.
Therefore, when securing the server processes, consider the:
Even though some ports are necessary to have, for example, the HTTPS server open port, understand that every open port is a security vulnerability. Every outgoing and incoming port increases the chances of security threats to your IoT devices. Therefore, ensure you out in security measure, ideally, use a firewall as a prevention measure. Further, be deliberate to verify the ports that are open or in use in your devices, regardless of which operating system you are using in your devices.
You can never forget the encryption of files and information pieces in this time of a tech-savvy population. Encryption limits any loopholes for insecurity through codes that only you and the people you allow access have. Ideally, if you consider a cloud backup solution, for example, Ottomatik.io offering MySQL backup, you must be vigilant with the encryption services of the service providers, not to mention, on your initiative.
The good thing with encryption is that once you upload your data in an encrypted format, no one can access it without the codes to decrypt it. This limits modification, or deletion chances for your information, and further protects your IoT devices.