IoT Security: How to Ensure Cybersecurity

IoT Security and Cybersecurity

Companies are, continually striving to make virtual connections everywhere. IoT devices that are connected (smartphones, smart home equipment, etc.) can ‘communicate’ with one another. When there is not enough security, all these connected devices provide direct entry into personal and professional networks and these become vulnerable to theft of data. The data can even be destroyed.

With IoT devices becoming more popular by the day, cybersecurity has assumed more relevance than before and has also led to a challenging scenario with increased connectivity. 

IoT Security Threats – Some Statistics

Malware blockers have sensed a 40% rise in malware attacks in the recent past. This indicates how IoT cybersecurity is becoming more compromised. 

Unfortunately, 98% of IoT device traffic is unencrypted, and this exposes personal and confidential data over networks. This is an example of IoT cyber risk. 

More than half of IoT devices are vulnerable to medium- or high-severity cyber-attacks. Also, more than 40% of the attacks exploit device vulnerabilities. 

Read our blog: “Remotely Access IoT Devices”

IoT Security  – Vulnerabilities and Challenges

    1. Insufficient Testing and Updates

In a majority of cases, in companies developing IoT devices, there is less attention paid to security unless a major hit occurs. At the launch of IoT devices, their manufacturers make sure it is secure. However, over time, the vulnerabilities show up and the device becomes prone to hackers. Other security issues due to the lack of regular testing also crop up and make way for more security challenges. 

    2. Lack of Compliance 

 Everyday interactions with IoT devices expose their vulnerabilities. As an example, fitness trackers keep the Bluetooth visible after the pairing is first done. There are many other vulnerabilities that smart devices exhibit. These make for the biggest security threats. 

Some other Security Issues in IoT devices that are Commonly observed are:

  • Weak passwords
  • Usage of old versions of OS and other software
  • Unprotected data storage, transfer
  • Hardware technical issues 
    3. Botnet Attacks

Cybersecurity is essential as IoT devices are vulnerable to malware attacks. They are not regularly updated with software security updates like a computer. A botnet attack happens when an army of bots is infected using malware by a hacker who further directs them to send thousands of requests in a second to bring down the intended target.

Read our Blog: “How IoT Technology Optimize Energy Consumption and Improve Sustainability in Smart Cities”

Cybersecurity and IoT should be in place to avoid any cyber-attack. A botnet attack can disrupt manufacturing plants, transportation systems, electrical grids, water treatment facilities, etc. Such attacks are likely to threaten large groups of people. 

    4. Data Security and Privacy Issues

Data theft from large corporations can lead to intellectual property compromise. IoT is a target-rich environment and attracts more than a quarter of all cyber-attacks. The lagging security aspects in IoT are attributed to careless employees who use their devices for work purposes and a majority of them purportedly use unsanctioned web apps. 

    5. Financial Crimes

Electronic payment companies deploying IoT are vulnerable to financial crimes. Their challenge is the timely detection of fraud. Compliance and operational issues make it difficult for them to launch new workflow models. For this, they should improve their project lifecycle and risk management strategies. 

Read our Blog: “IoT in Manufacturing and its Applications and Benefits”

    6. Home Invasions

 ‘Smart homes’ is a by-product of IoT. Cybersecurity is an issue that has to be tackled when it comes to home automation. Unsafe devices having poor defense mechanisms make your IP addresses trackable and this makes it easy for hackers to locate the address of your device increasing the vulnerability.

    7. Remote Smart Vehicle Access

Similar to home invasion is the hijacking of smart vehicles. This can also lead to personal vehicle theft, data theft, manipulation of critical systems, etc. Hackers can use ransomware to attack vehicles and may demand huge fees to unlock the car or enable an engine. 

iot networks

Cybersecurity strategies to overcome IoT vulnerabilities

    1. Secure the Network

It is vital to secure the network that connects the back-end systems and the IoT devices. This is achieving by implementing regular security features like anti-malware, firewalls, antivirus, and intrusion detection and prevention systems. The IoT network has to be protecting and secure for smooth operations. 

    2. Authenticate IoT Devices

Device authentication features for IoT devices have to be in place. Multifactor authentication and biometric systems can be use to ensure that nobody has access to your devices. Without personal information, a potential attacker cannot gain access to the information you have the advantage of here.

Therefore, it is important to secure your devices to reduce the probability of your data getting into the wrong hands. By implementing appropriate security options, you can prevent your IoT from falling prey to an external breach of security. 

    3. Public key Infrastructure Strategy

public key

A public key infrastructure (PKI) helps users to engage in secure communication and data and money exchange. This kind of engagement is carrying out with the help of public and private cryptographic key pairs.

PKI ensures the encryption of data via asymmetric and symmetric encryption processes. In asymmetric encryption, one needs two keys (the public key and the private key). Once encrypted with the public key, then decryption is possible only when done with the private key and vice-versa. 

On the other hand, for symmetric encryption, both encryption and decryption are done using the same key. This ensures that data privacy is maintained and chances of data theft are near zero.

    4. IoT security analytics

You can drastically reduce the occurrence of security issues by implementing security analytics. This involves the collection, correlation, and analysis of data from different sources and helps security providers by identifying patterns leading to potential threats.


If you are building IoT projects, it’s important to start thinking about implementing security from the early research and development stages. To develop secure IoT products, you need the skills of expert IoT software developers and quality assurance specialists with extensive experience.


Q1: Why is it a challenge to secure IoT devices?

A1: Securing IoT systems is tricky, because a lot of smart devices have only limited computing power and are constrained by resources. Therefore, they cannot run powerful security functions and are likely to have more vulnerabilities than non-IoT devices do. 

Q2: How can you improve security in IoT?

Security best practices that businesses can adapt to protect their IoT devices are:

  • Change default passwords
  • Protect the software
  • Prevent IoT identity spoofing
  • Use encrypted protocols

Q3: Are IoT devices more vulnerable to threats?

IoT devices are more vulnerable to network attacks like phishing attacks, data thefts, identity spoofing, and denial of service attacks (DDoS attacks). These can, in turn, lead to other cybersecurity threats like data breaches and ransomware attacks, making businesses lose a lot of money. There is also tremendous effort require to recover from the effect of these attacks.