IoT (the Internet of Things) is a double-edged sword. While it makes life much simpler, this convenience comes at a price. Every IoT device in your network is a possible entry point for an attacker. However, the importance of IoT technology in business cannot be stressed enough. It improves asset utilization, gives us insights to improve business efficiency, and allows business leaders to make more informed decisions. IoT is an integral part of modern businesses, and business owners must do their best to safeguard their data, connected devices, and networks. Below list of IoT security tips are a few ways to do that.
Best IoT Security Tips to ensure the highest security
Know your network and the IoT devices on it
To improve your system connectivity, you need to know your network and every connected device on the network. When an IoT device is connected to the internet, this connection leaves your entire network vulnerable to attacks if the device is not properly secure.
Many IoT devices are being equipped with web interfaces, and you can easily lose track of the devices that can be accessed. For enhanced security, know your network, the connected devices on your network, and the type of information they can disclose if they are penetrated. Hackers use details such as your address, location, and personal details to monitor you, which can lead to real-world dangers.
Assess the security of the IoT security on your network
Once you are aware of the connected devices on your network, audit every device to ascertain its security. Many IoT devices have certificates that show their security level and the best practices to keep them secure. Opt for these devices instead of going for devices that are unrated and vulnerable.
Keep software up to date
Responsible manufacturers will always release security updates. Keep your software up to date to ensure that your IoT devices are patched with the latest security updates. If there is a device that doesn’t receive updates, think of its benefits and see whether they surpass the effects of a potential attack on your business.
Encrypt your devices and accounts with strong passwords
To secure your connected devices and accounts, use strong and unique passwords that are difficult to guess. Be sure to change the default passwords and get rid of common default passwords. You and your employees should also avoid using the same password on multiple accounts to keep your devices secure, even if one device is compromised.
Use network segmentation
Network segmentation is one of the important IoT Security Tips and probably the most strategic approach to IoT security, and refers to you and your employees using a different network other than your business network for your smart devices. This means that attackers won’t happen upon your business network even if one smart device is compromised.
Reconfigure the default settings of your IoT devices
Many IoT devices are purchased with unsecure default settings. Permissions, intrusive features, open ports, weak default credentials, and more should be assessed and reconfigured based on your business’s requirements.
Use firewalls to identify vulnerabilities and improve IoT security
You can use firewalls to run intrusion detection systems/intrusion prevention systems (IDS/IPS) to surveil and analyze your network. Firewalls also help to block unauthorized traffic over the wire. Other IoT security solutions you can use include port scanners and automated vulnerability scanners. Use port scanners to identify open ports and review the running network services. Automated vulnerability scanners are used to detect security weaknesses within a network’s infrastructure.
Use multi-factor authentication
Multi-factor authentication is an added security layer beyond a strong password. With it, anyone trying to access any of your IoT devices will have to provide extra proof of identity. That extra proof of identity can be a verification code or a one-time pin sent to their email or phone.
Disconnect devices and disable features when they are not in use
Virtually all IoT devices allow you to control them from any corner of the planet, but if you only use them on your business’ Wi-Fi network, disable voice control and remote access. Disable features such as Bluetooth connectivity in smart speakers and voice control in smart TVs. Most importantly, disconnect any IoT device from your network altogether when it’s not in use.
Disable Universal Plug and Play (UPnP)
Although universal plug-and-play makes networking devices seamless and without hassles of configurations, it also makes your IoT devices discoverable to cybercriminals outside your local network. Universal plug and play is enabled by default on most routers, so ensure you check your router’s settings and turn it off unless you are willing to weaken your network’s security for the sake of convenience.
Enhance the physical security of your devices
If you use your phone to control your IoT devices and you happen to lose it, ensure you can wipe it remotely on top of having a strong password and biometric protection.
Keep third-party access lists updated
It won’t matter how good your IoT security is if a vendor you have allowed to access your device is compromised. Their mistakes can cost your business as well. To eliminate such risks, keep third-party access lists up to date, delete old vendors, and revoke any unnecessary permissions. In addition, be sure to implement compliance standards that vendors should follow and make sure they are meeting the requirements.
Buy your IoT devices from reputable sellers
When buying your IoT devices, be sure to choose a reputable seller who is likely to be around for a long time. IoT devices need to be updated regularly, especially when security flaws are detected, so you need a manufacturer who will be there to provide support.
Although IoT technologies have come with complicated security challenges, they also have incredible potential. IoT connectivity has demonstrated usefulness in business problems. The problems arise when businesses rush to adopt IoT and fail to take IoT security seriously enough. You can purchase the most expensive IoT devices and still end up putting your business at the risk of attacks. Consider the above IoT security tips to enhance your IoT security.