Just a few years ago the Internet of Things (IoT) was a buzzword that many people were talking about, but very few knew what it actually meant. Now, IoT is no longer a futuristic concept, but is a part of our everyday lives; sometimes without us even realizing it. In our personal lives IoT devices make many activities much easier to do. Our coffee machines can automatically prepare us a latte as soon as we wake up, we can control the temperature of our house from anywhere in the world, and we can switch off the lights without having to get up.
IoT in the workplace
IoT devices also provide advantages in the workplace. As a result, these devices are increasing in daily use. With them, organizations can work smarter. These devices can provide a real-time glimpse into the inner workings of the company’s systems by presenting information on machine performance and supply chain operations, for example. Additionally, IoT devices can reduce costs for an enterprise by automating processes, improving services, reducing waste and providing transparency into customer transactions.
For employees, IoT devices allow them to be connected anywhere at any time. Because of this, fewer devices are needed to carry out different tasks; personal devices can now be used for work purposes. This is especially beneficial when circumstances require remote work (i.e. when a global pandemic essentially causes the entire world to shut down).
Is your office coffee machine an everyday cyber risk?
Thanks to its many advantages, almost all organizations are utilizing IoT devices in a number of ways to improve efficiency. However, as the name suggests, IoT devices require internet access in order to operate. This means an increased number of devices connected to an organization’s network. To an attacker, this is understood as more entry points to exploit in a cyberattack. Some IoT devices might not even be considered a security threat. How could the super cool coffee machine in the office’s kitchen be an everyday cyber risk? Well, it is connected to the network and that is all a bad actor needs to cause substantial damage.
Using IoT devices out of office does not alleviate the risk; in fact, it only proliferates it. COVID-19 has meant many employees are working remotely and this often means using personal devices to do so. This emphasized BYOD effect provides perpetrators with an easier way of gaining access to an organization’s network. This is due to the fact there are not only more devices being used, but these devices often have insufficient security measures to detect – let alone prevent – an attack. Additionally, working remotely can allow employees to work over public Wi-Fi hotspots which can be manipulated to provide bad actors with network access.
With the increasing use of IoT devices, organizations are having a difficult time keeping up with what devices are connected to its infrastructure. This is extremely dangerous from a cybersecurity aspect as it increases the chances of a successful hardware attack.
Sepio’s solution provides enterprises with full visibility to whatever is connected to the infrastructure and uncovers hidden hardware attacks operating over network and USB interfaces. As the only company in the world to undertake Physical Layer fingerprinting, Sepio’s solution identifies, detects and handles all peripherals. No device goes unmanaged. With this total visibility, a stronger cybersecurity posture is achieved. There is no longer a need to rely on manual reporting. Legacy inventory reports and employee compliance to determine if there is a vulnerable device installed by a malicious actor. Sepio Systems now provides answers to questions such as:
– Do we have an implant or spoofed device in our network?
– How many IoT devices do we have?
– Who are the top 5 vendors for devices found in our network?
– Where are the most vulnerable switches in our network?
Having visibility across all IT assets provides the organization with a more comprehensive cybersecurity defense and can greatly reduce the risk of a hardware attack being successful.