Momentum Grows for Internet of Things, But Security Challenges Loom Large

26 February 2016

The Internet of Things (IoT) was a major topic of conversation at this year’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona.  This should not be surprising, since IoT solutions offer myriad opportunities to mobile operators, chip manufacturers and other stakeholders.  Analysts are suggesting that IoT is poised to experience a whopping $6 trillion investment by 2020 with solutions that lower service provider costs, boost productivity and open up new markets.

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The Internet of Things (IoT) was a major topic of conversation at this year’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona.  This should not be surprising, since IoT solutions offer myriad opportunities to mobile operators, chip manufacturers and other stakeholders.  Analysts are suggesting that IoT is poised to experience a whopping $6 trillion investment by 2020 with solutions that lower service provider costs, boost productivity and open up new markets.

Mobile World Congress 2016

Mobile World Congress 2016

While the opportunities are seemingly boundless, players throughout the value chain must think outside the box when mapping out and executing their IoT business strategies and an upfront commitment to security is perhaps the most significant challenge facing the market now.

Since the technologies and principles of IoT will have a profound impact on corporations’ strategy and risk management practices, security needs to be a primary concern throughout the IoT value chain.

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Recent research on the IoT market has been bullish.  There will be 34 billion devices connected to the internet by 2020, up from 10 billion in 2015, according to Business Insider.  Nearly $6 trillion will be spent on IoT solutions over the next five years, the analysts estimate.

Gartner, Inc. has highlighted the top 10 Internet of Things (IoT) technologies that should be on every organization’s radar through the next two years. These technologies and principles of IoT will have a very broad impact on organizations, affecting business strategy, risk management and a wide range of technical areas such as architecture and network design, the analysts said.  IoT security concerns were at the top of the list.

Security Gaps Must Be Addressed

Security issues also were front and center at MWC 2016.   “One of the biggest barriers to adoption for IoT is security,” Simon Segars, CEO of ARM, noted in his keynote address.  “If we don’t get security right, the IoT can’t deliver its true potential.”

Segars’ remarks about the importance of security come just weeks after GSMA unveiled new security guidelines for the Internet of Things.  The new guidelines recognize that as billions of devices become connected in the IoT, the risk of potential vulnerabilities increases.

“These can be overcome if the end-to-end security of an IoT service is carefully considered by the service provider when designing their service and an appropriate mitigating technology is deployed,” said GSMA Chief Technology Officer Alex Sinclair, said.  “A proven and robust approach to security will create trusted, reliable services that scale as the market grows.”

Sources

http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/cybersecurity-and-smart-buildings-mitigating-the-disruption-of-cyber-breaches-300225199.html

http://www.businessinsider.com/iot-ecosystem-internet-of-things-forecasts-and-business-opportunities-2016-2

http://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/business-technology/our-insights/the-internet-of-things-the-value-of-digitizing-the-physical-world

http://www.telecomasia.net/content/take-iot-security-seriously-warns-arm-chief

http://www.gsma.com/newsroom/press-release/gsma-announces-security-guidelines-to-support-growth-of-the-internet-of-things/

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