Scalable Security in IoT Networks

Scalable Security in IoT Networks

Aug 07, 2022 / Kron


IoT (Internet of Things) and Industrial IoT are at the root of some of the biggest current challenges in network, data and application security.

Some experts believe that in a world where everything is connected, business potential is being held back by security concerns, and they are right.

It's often the fear of attacks and security breaches that holds IT, OT, and network operations teams back from large-scale deployments, such as smart buildings, smart factories, smart campuses or smart cities.

A recent survey on IoT security shows that 97 percent of respondents believe unsecured IoT devices could prove disastrous for their business.

Only 29 percent of IoT users say they actively monitor connected endpoints and systems from third-party risks.

The Internet of Things (IoT): A New Era of Third-Party Risks, published by the Ponemon Institute, an independent research firm specializing in privacy, data protection, and information security policy, confirms the view of many CIOs that there is still a long way to go and that there are clear and visible dangers if security is not properly maintained.

While real-world cyberattacks on IoT have brought attention to this area, incidents in recent years have raised awareness. These are some of the cyberattacks on IoT technologies that have occurred in recent years, from the U.S. to Germany:

  • In the U.S., IoT devices were turned into bots and then controlled to participate in a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, similar to the Dyn attack that took down Netflix, Twitter, Amazon, Airbnb, CNN and the New York Times.
  • A steel plant in Germany was the target of a cyberattack in which cyber attackers took control of the production software and caused significant property damage.
  • In Ukraine, a power grid was completely shut down, affecting 86,000 households.
  • In Dallas, Texas, 156 tornado warnings were hacked and issued every 90 seconds, causing panic and fear that World War III had started.
  • Ransomware attacks were carried out on hospital devices in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, and a state of emergency was declared as critical services in hospitals were interrupted.

It should come as no surprise that enterprise network, application, and sensitive data executives have been slow to move forward with major IoT implementations, despite companies' belief in cost savings, more competitive offers, more efficient supply chains, and stronger red lines.

For decades, with the help of Identity Access Management and Privileged Access Management systems, they battled threats to their core infrastructure – servers, networks, phone systems, and cloud networks - by controlling who has access or is authorized to access the infrastructure, from which devices, and at what level that access occurs.

Privileged Access Management (PAM) has become a necessity in today's world to secure such modern devices and protect IoT networks from attacks. However, as the Internet of Things (IoT) increases the number of endpoint devices, the demand for PAM products becomes much more distributed and complex, while Privileged Access Management solutions undergo an equally advanced and powerful transformation.

PAM products that help manage users, administrators, and hundreds of thousands of "things" connected to a network are now essential components of large enterprises' cybersecurity policies.

However, PAM for endpoint devices in the IoT space is significantly different from traditional PAM products. For this reason, security professionals should consider PAM for IoT as a specialized area, rather than an extension of the traditional PAM offering. This is because there are major differences in securing the many IoT devices supported by more than 500 different IoT platforms.

As with traditional IT and OT, there is no single security tool/solution on the IoT side either, so traditional approaches to cybersecurity solutions present many choices as well.

When evaluating the use of Privileged Access Management solutions for IoT, one of the biggest concerns is scalability. Our PAM solution, Single Connect, was originally created with telecom and service providers in mind, and scales better than traditional Privileged Access Management products, even in large organizations. This makes it a favorite of the world's leading enterprises, for their security needs.

Contact to learn more about how we can help you secure your IoT and IIoT deployments and would like more information on Single Connect.

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