Is Your IT Ready for the Internet of Things?

Share on linkedin
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Internet of things

The Internet of Things (IoT) is exploding, with experts predicting there will soon be billions of connected, “smart” devices ranging from fitness monitors to door locks, video cameras, and coffee makers. Herewith, why you should care, and what you should do about it.

The IoT In Brief: Growing Use, Growing Risks for Business

New IoT devices are brought to market almost weekly. Many are consumer-focused, but business are deploying IoT devices as well. Video cameras and monitors, loading dock locks and scanners, and even break room coffee machines and refrigerators are gaining network connections and interfaces with icons and touchscreens.

However, Internet of things devices can create serious cyber security risks. In February, Security Boulevard published “The Looming Enterprise IoT Security Threat.” That report made three sobering points.

  • The growing business use of IoT devices creates an expanded attack surface for hackers, since most of those devices lack basic security controls, don’t allow patching, and are often poorly monitored.
  • Most businesses have little to no idea of the number or types of Internet of things devices connected to their networks, which means they have incomplete pictures of their true risk postures.
  • Because many IoT devices have no features for security or updates and are poorly monitored, once connected to a network, the risks they create can linger indefinitely.

In March, TechRepublic reported on a Ponemon Institute survey of more than 600 corporate governance and risk oversight professionals.

  • 97 percent said a security incident related to unsecured IoT devices could be “catastrophic” for their organizations.
  • 81 percent said a data breach caused by an unsecured IoT device was likely to occur within the next 24 months.
  • 46 percent said they have policies in place to disable an IoT device that posed a risk to their organizations, but only 15 percent said they have an inventory of most of their IoT applications.
  • 88 percent said the lack of centralized security control was the primary obstacle to complete inventories of IoT resources.
  • The average number of workplace IoT connections is expected to rise from nearly 16,000 in 2017 to nearly 25,000 in 2018.

In May, Dark Reading reported on a survey of some 1,000 IT directors in the U.S., the UK, Germany, and the UAE. “Thirty-five percent of the respondents from the first three countries reported more than 5,000 non-business devices connected to their enterprise network every single day. One-third of the respondents from US, UK, and Germany reported more than 1,000 shadow-IoT devices connected to their network on a typical day.”

The IoT: What to Do

You cannot manage or secure what you can’t see and don’t know about. This means you need to be able to discover and map all of the assets and connections on your network, and to keep that information accurate, complete, and up to date. You also need to be able to map, visualize, and keep tabs on the relationships that link your IT assets to their users and the tasks they perform.

Once you have achieved the ability to discover and map your assets, you can begin to manage them effectively. Effective IT asset management (ITAM) means you can impose policies that govern connections to your network consistently and reliably. In some cases, those policies may need to include a ban on devices that cannot be adequately secured, patched, or updated.

Discovery and ITAM tools from Virima can help you support and manage IoT devices and connections while minimizing security risks. They can automatically capture and inventory data about the IoT devices that provide it. They can also help you identify, further scrutinize, and isolate those that don’t, to maximize protection against device hijackers and hackers.

They can map dependencies, visualize relationships, and provide accurate, complete, timely information about your environment. These benefits can help make your environment more stable, secure, responsive, and valuable to your business. Learn more about Virima’s solutions for Discovery, ITAM, and IT Service Management (ITSM), and how they can help you #CoverYourAssets, here.

Summary:

The IoT In Brief: Growing Use, Growing Risks for Business

The Internet of Things (IoT) is exploding, with experts predicting there will soon be billions of connected, “smart” devices ranging from fitness monitors to door locks, video cameras, and coffee makers. New IoT devices are brought to market almost weekly. Many are consumer-focused, but business are deploying IoT devices as well. Video cameras and monitors, loading dock locks and scanners, and even break room coffee machines and refrigerators are gaining network connections and interfaces with icons and touchscreens. You cannot manage or secure what you can’t see and don’t know about. This means you need to be able to discover and map all of the assets and connections on your network, and to keep that information accurate, complete, and up to date. You also need to be able to map, visualize, and keep tabs on the relationships that link your IT assets to their users and the tasks they perform.

Share on linkedin
Share on facebook
Share on twitter

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

More to Explore

To understand the business value of service mapping, it’s important to shift to a service delivery mindset, rather than thinking about delivering infrastructure, equipment, software, and applications. Defining services is relatively simple if thought of as the commoditization of what’s…

Business Service mapping – the area of configuration management that perplexes so many IT professionals, yet that which provides the highest value in configuration management database (CMDB) projects. There are several major reasons IT gets stopped when it comes to…

The world of service management has changed as technology has shifted from providing tools for administrative support to being fully embedded in the delivery of the business’ core function. There’s a world of difference between using an accounts payable system…

The Configuration Management Database (CMDB) provides a single database that contains information about the enterprise’s assets, both logical and physical. In modern service management platforms, it provides core functionality that is referenced by all of the service management practices, including…

The importance of discovery comes from what it provides to the users of the configuration management database (CMDB): trustworthy data and greater speed to value. Without discovery, the CMDB database is built by feeds and data entry, which can lead to…

There is an old saying that you can’t manage something unless you can measure it. IT asset discovery can provide you with accurate and up-to-date data and information about everything you use in IT.  You can then develop metrics using…

The most significant ServiceNow CMDB best practice is having a system with data you can trust. ServiceNow will tell you that, your stakeholders will tell you that, and IT service management (ITSM) professionals will tell you that.  Achieving high-quality configuration…

A CMDB’s value is undisputed when carefully implemented with a clear plan in place about how the CMDB database will be used and maintained within your organization.  Below is a list of six steps that you should have in place…

The past decade has introduced a tremendous change in the IT industry.  If you were to compare your IT ecosystem today with how it was ten years ago, you would likely find it hard even to recognize that you’re looking…

CMDB’s time has come! A new decade is upon us, and if you are like most people in the IT industry, you’re spending some time reflecting on what has been accomplished in the past few years and thinking about what…