How to Hacker-Proof IoT Components and the Devices Linked to Them

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The internet of things (IoT) refers to small components that are part of the large network of interlinked devices that communicate with each other and transfer data.

Nowadays, IoT is in everything from a smartwatch to a mobile card readers, with the number of devices linked to IoT growing every day.

Although this technology enables businesses to link versatile devices to a single network effortlessly, data that is not secured and unmanaged IoT components can create a major flaw for companies with otherwise strong security.

According to research, 69% of businesses claim that they have more IoT components compared to the number of computers. Over 84% of security professionals have said that IoT devices are more at risk of cyberattacks than computers.

Moreover, the same survey showed that 67% of the corporations in question have already been the target of threat actors that exploited vulnerable IoTs.

Below, we discover how to set up and strengthen security for IoT devices and what role do tools such as Breach and Attack Simulation have in the security management of IoT devices.

Applying Best IoT Security Practices

Top cyber protection methods for securing IoT devices and those that connect and communicate with them include:

● Mapping all of the devices that connect to the network of a business — discovering all of the IoTs and continually updating that inventory as new components are added

● Divide IoT from other IT assets — the separation of these two segments within the network gives security teams more control and denies hackers full control over the important assets if they manage to compromise IoTs

● Insist on strong credentials — weak passwords that are the default setting of versatile IoT devices are common causes of their exploitation

The discovery of all IoT devices that communicate with the software used by the company is possible with security solutions that are designed to accommodate the protective needs of such small components.

To ensure a birds-eye view of all the devices, it’s essential to track details such as which types are linked to the network, where they are exactly, who their manufacturer is, and how they are configured. It is also imperative to repeat that with any new IoT that is added to the network.

This data forms their ID. If they present a cybersecurity risk to the company’s network, the ID of the IoT can be used to pinpoint the exact issue and device that needs to be managed.

Segmentation of the network is also critical to prevent the spreading of infection in case threat actors manage to exploit unsecured IoTs. For instance, a New Generation Firewall can aid teams in dividing IT from IoT assets within the system.

Another thing to note is that many IoT devices have notoriously weak security because they come with easily hacked passwords. Most of them can be easily tracked on the internet by a hacker. Ensure that the team makes changes to the default settings to remove this weak spot within security.

Management of Security

Once the layers of protection are ready to guard the system on multiple levels, the security has to be managed — continually scanned, monitored, and tested to uncover flaws.

As mentioned, new IoT components must be logged in for complete visibility, and their weak default credentials should also be changed.

The next step is monitoring the devices in real-time to catch any suspicious activity early on and respond to alerts at that point at the possibility that IoT is putting the network at hacking risk. This is done with AI-based tools that monitor the behavior of numerous components.

Even more, it’s important to determine if the security solutions and protocols would be effective in defending the organization in the case of a genuine attack.

One tool that has been integral for testing is known as Breach and Attack Simulation (BAS). It can assess whether the security posture would withstand anticipated threats (such as phishing, DDoS, ransomware, and malware) as well as zero-day exploits.

The BAS tool is linked to a vast library of hacking exploits also known as MITRE ATT&CK Framework. Since it’s regularly updated, it can evaluate whether the business is ready to fend off both well-known threats and new risks that might compromise the company.

Reacting to Threats and Patching up Vulnerabilities

After the layers of security are set, and the company has IoT protection and systems for the management of the security ready, it’s necessary to use the data to eliminate threats early or patch up weaknesses that might endanger the organization.

Some of the weaknesses posed by the IoT components can be removed and detected by regular scanning and patching up of flaws.

In this process, there’s often the danger that weaknesses aren’t detected with the components released by vendors. The issue is that they weren’t created with the ability to be fixed or that vendors have stopped providing security support for the released IoT endpoints.

Most vendors of IoT devices nowadays will release patches for the newly found flaws on their websites. Apply them to the detected IoT within your company’s network.

Final Word

As organizations link more IoT devices to their company’s infrastructures, they might have difficulty retaining control over their security and protecting high volumes of data generated from linked gadgets and appliances.

It’s important to have a complete overview and sense of how many IoT components are communicating with the corporate network and which devices must be managed at all times.

Similar to traditional security, making IoT safe and getting the most out of it includes testing with software such as Breach and Attack Simulation and strengthening the security posture by eliminating vulnerabilities.

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