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Posted Aug 4th, 2017

Don’t Let IoT Leak Your Data as Devices Fail or Are Replaced

The Internet of Things market is expected to rise from $170 billion this year to $561 billion by 2022, with millions and millions of new devices to be added to our lives. Smart appliances are finding their ways into kitchens while building controls keep lights and temperatures constant, and even solar panels on our roofs are tracking energy consumption and helping optimize power usage through an entire building.

Plus, in our warehouses and factories, offices and small businesses, there is an increase in sensors, smartphones, personal assistance devices, inventory management tools, and so much more.

Each and every device that connects to your network could be a threat. We’ve heard about how baby monitors can be hacked and used in DDoS attacks, so many people are taking time to start securing their networks and new devices.

It’s a great first step, but it overlooks one new, key area.

The first couple generations of IoT devices are starting to fail or be replaced by newer models, so they’re being tossed away. That’s a huge risk, because the dumpster is an unsecure location.

IoT and Data Risk: What you need to know

Protecting Your New Data Stream

When electronics reach their end-of-life, we tend to toss them in the trash. Not only is that terrible for the environment, but it puts your business at risk.

Many of these devices store data. Even if they aren’t keeping your company’s secrets, they’re likely keeping a hold on to the keys used to access your network. They also broadcast their IP addresses.

If someone can access both of those pieces of information, they can trick your network into providing access. A hacker could spoof the IP address and Mac ID then use the key they found, making the network think the old device is simply reconnecting.

Now, the malicious actors have some access to your network. That starting point can eventually become a much larger hole when code is injected into your site or executed by the device.

You can protect your network by shredding any device that can contains data and is no longer of use to your company. We know that wiping hard drives doesn’t always work and neither does a factory reset. It’s time to recycle those goods and destroy the threats that you’re facing.

Surviving the IoT Revolution

Your business needs to get everyone on the same page when it comes to these devices. The IT team may help to install the fire alarm or smart sensors, but when they break, it might be up to your office manager to replace them.

The addition of new devices or replacements could insert new vulnerabilities into your network.

Also, there are new threats with each new generation of smart, IoT device. That risk increases because developers are making changes and updates to take advantage of innovative technologies, better data integration and analysis, response to low- or high-power consumption controls, and the ability for these devices to speak with each other to accomplish a larger goal.

Your team needs to stay on top of new devices and protocols because, as it stands right now, there is no uniform standard or requirement for security and safety in these IoT devices.

If you need any assistance in creating a strategy to address new IoT devices or are ready to shred those your business no longer needs, contact Securis right away for a free quote.

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