Pros and Cons of IoT

Understand Internet of Things (IoT)

As economies across the world try to determine the new way of life due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the demand of connected devices continues to rise. These devices are also called the Internet of Things (IoT). IoT consists of internet-compatible devices and machines that share data with each other. IoT devices not only include computers, laptops and smartphones, but also include objects equipped with chips to gather and communicate data over a network (e.g. household security systems, kitchen appliances, heart monitors). It is projected that 75 billion devices will be used around the world by 2025.

Connectivity Basics

Whether its working remotely, connecting virtually to meetings and/or conferences on a smartTV, or making credit card purchases utilizing a smartphone or smartwatch (also known as a wearable device), the resiliency of the devices’ connectivity is essential to the continuous data exchange between machines, systems, and people over the internet. The IoT generates great amounts of data and cloud computing provides a path for that data to transmit to its destination. As such, companies are either investing in improving their internal IT infrastructure and IT resources or contracting with Cloud based services from Amazon, Microsoft, Google, IBM, or similar Cloud Service providers, to obtain a wide range of computing services. In addition, the deployment of 5G networks will offer new opportunities for faster data transmission with lower latency. 

Artificial Intelligence and Benefits of IoT

IoT not only provides the ability to easily access real-time information, no matter where users are located, but also utilizes Artificial Intelligence (AI) to learn from each device’s specific use. AI refers to the ability of a digital computer or computer-controlled robot to perform tasks commonly associated with intelligent beings.

AI enhances the capabilities of IoT by applying machine learning to data generated from the devices and improving decision-making. Consumers/end users experience a sense of convenience and personalization when devices use the data to interact with them on a daily basis and complete tasks. For example, wearable devices notify users when heart rate problems are detected or the smart home knows to turn on lights or set the air conditioner to the right temperature when a user enters the room. The more information the user shares, the better the decision making, improving the overall predictability of the users’ day to day routine.

From the company perspective, the accessibility of information provides some of the following opportunities:

  • Predict consumer preferences and upcoming business trends and enhance the personalization of products and services;
  • Improve working efficiency by automating repetitive tasks usually performed by employees and free up their time to focus on more complex tasks; and 
  • Improve asset management with equipment using IoT connected sensors to track and monitor performance, detect issues and take appropriate action for resolution.

Realistic Security Concerns

Along with these benefits, IoT provides new ways for cybercriminals to attempt to steal highly-sensitive information and/or take control of systems remotely for financial gain. Mistakes caused by humans both initiate and increase the risks of cyber-crimes and maintaining awareness of cybersecurity risks is the first line of defense. Before investing in a new device, consumers should assess the devices’ security to prevent third parties and cybercriminals from accessing their personal information and monitoring their daily routine. In order for companies to achieve desired business outcomes and manage cybersecurity risks, correct safeguards must be implemented to mitigate the risk each new device type presents to the connected network and must have fast response capabilities for successful attacks.

Final Takeaway On IoT

The power of information provided by these devices touches our lives on a daily basis. As we continue to enjoy the many benefits, we must all do our part and be proactive in establishing a security posture that effectively lessens the risk of threats from cybercriminals.

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Greg Daniel
Greg Daniel | Senior Manager