The “Internet of Things.” It sounds like the title of a Dr. Seuss book, but it’s actually quite straight-forward: it’s simply all the devices, or “things,” which must connect wirelessly to the Internet to function properly. Smartphones, tablets, headsets, monitors – anything that connects wirelessly to the Internet or an Internet device is an IoT device. It’s estimated the amount of IoT devices will double within the next five years – and with it, an increased need for better security. Here are a few tips to ensure you don’t increase your security risks with IoT devices.
Watch Out for Devices Connecting to Your Business Network
While the concept of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is definitely growing in popularity, the same can be said for the need for increased security measures to account for them. Yes, allowing employees to bring in and work from their laptops, tablets, and smartphones can save a company quite a bit of money in hardware expenses, it also brings with it inherent risks. Some devices contain unknown viruses which lie in wait until the device connects to a network. One of the best ways to boost Internet of Things security and combat these viruses is to review your computer security policies and ensure each employee’s device is required to be thoroughly pre-scanned for viruses before they are ever allowed to connect to your network.
Unsecured Second-Hand Devices Can Be a Problem
Another practice becoming more and more popular is the act of purchasing gently-used devices for personal use. If employees bring in these devices and connect to your network through them, the individual who sold them the device may still have access to the old passwords. If they can still remotely log into the individual’s device – they can also access your network indirectly through them. A great way to avoid this is to require initial password changes of all BYOD devices, then follow-up password changes at least every six months. Doing so will allow your team the satisfaction of using their own devices, and you the satisfaction of knowing your Internet of Things security is quite strong.
Talk to Alliance about Forming an Internet of Things Security Plan
To quell your concerns and worries about adopting a BYOD plan for your business, talk to Alliance about what we can do to help you ensure your network always remains secure. We carry an expert level of Internet of Things security knowledge which can help you move your business forward to the type of workflow you want to achieve.
Alliance Technology Partners is a St. Louis Based IT Consulting company that serves the Greater St. Louis Area (Chesterfield, Ballwin, Ellisville, Creve Coeur, Ladue, Town and Country, St. Charles, Ferguson, Fenton, St. Peters) and Grand Rapids, MI.