According to IoT Agenda, the global IoT market is on its way to exceeding $2.5 trillion annually by 2027 and over 41 billion devices will have a connection to the Internet by the same year. This simply shows that IoT security has so many benefits for businesses and organizations. Some of these benefits include better consumer insights, lower costs of operations, and opportunities for businesses to optimize their operations.
However, the situation is not always a positive one and that explains why certain organizations might only view the disadvantages of the Internet of Things devices and be skeptical to utilize them. In this article, we discuss the advantages and disadvantages of IoT security in the business.
Benefits of IoT
The Internet of Things offers a wide range of benefits in daily activities in the business industry. The benefits of IoT are highlighted below:
Efficient resource utilization
When businesses understand the functionality and the process by which each device operates, they will be better positioned to maximize their efficient resource utilization and also keep track of how they use natural resources. Thus, Internet of Things platforms help to monitor the equipment’s status so that they are functioning properly all the time.
IoT devices also help to maximize efficiency and increase productivity. They can track, manage, and notify employees of changes in productivity or processes, enabling them to make smarter and better decisions about the task. Automaker company – Ford, is utilizing body monitoring sensor devices and specialized Internet of Things technology to help workers optimize their work and at the same time protecting them from physical stress.
Ergonomists, as well as engineers, use the information to optimize each individual workstation to facilitate a better efficient movement and prevent employees from sustaining injuries. Through the implementation of this novel IoT innovation in the employee safety program of Ford, the company has seen a 70% reduction in the rates of injury at the assembly lines.
A network of IoT devices will assist organizations in the optimization of their workflows and also reduce their costs of operation because they offer real-time data. Systems can proactively warn of their status so employees can set the maintenance schedule before it affects production. IoT devices can be integrated into bigger systems so as to help minimize costs and optimize operational efficiency. For instance, smart building systems are used in tracking, monitoring, and controlling HVAC systems to supervise building usage and modify them to leverage on reduced time-of-use expenses, consequently saving money.
IoT improves security by securing IoT devices and every other system they are connected to. In the business sector, IoT security covers devices such as smart energy grids, building automation, industrial machines, and any other personal IoT devices the workers bring to work. A robust Internet of Things security portfolio enables developers to secure devices from every form of vulnerability while implementing the security strategies that best suit their business and application needs. IoT devices that can be used to improve security include smart security cameras, sensors that are used to capture data concerning industrial machinery, and trackers for goods, ships, and vehicles.
Enhance Data Collection
IoT devices allow businesses to collect data that will help them in identifying insights about their enterprise, both externally and internally. Businesses in the retail sector make use of beacon technology, in addition to other IoT devices in redesigning their stores according to real-time traffic trends. Logistics companies have also jumped on the train as well. They can utilize Internet-connected IoT systems to align delivery schedules and locations that drive the utmost efficient use of employees and vehicles.
Organizations that utilize IoT to facilitate modernization via their company will save time that would otherwise have been used to market for newer services and products and boost their ROI. As a result of the access, they have to highly actionable data from the IoT devices, they will be able to add value to the organization quickly and more efficiently.
In addition, the Internet of Things devices communicates and interact with each other. By so doing, they perform a lot of tasks for humans and consequently minimizing human efforts. By reducing human efforts, then definitely saves us more time to focus on other crucial tasks. Time is no doubt the primary resource that can be saved via an Internet of Things platform.
Disadvantages of IoT
While the use of IoT in businesses has become rapidly popular mainly as a result of the insights it offers, the technology however comes with its own challenges and risks. Below are some of the major disadvantages of IoT:
Ensuring that the data IoT devices gather and transmit is safe has been a major challenge. This is because they expand in their use and continually evolve. While cybersecurity is a major concern, IoT devices are not usually added to the strategy. It is imperative to protect devices from hardware-based attacks, network-based attacks, Internet-based software attacks, and even physical tampering.
With a vast fleet of IoT devices, it can be difficult to integrate security protocols and encryption with devices. The cost in effort, money and time to do this on all IoT devices might be quite restrictive, hence some organizations might employ insufficient platforms as they are inexpensive or even abandon them altogether. It takes just a single breach for an organization to learn a costly lesson.
Data privacy is also another issue, particularly because of the fact that IoT devices are increasingly being utilized in more sensitive sectors such as finance and healthcare. Data privacy policies are being affected all over the world, as well, which means that protecting data is not only excellent business sense, but it is in fact legally mandatory to do so.
In addition, even if there is no active participation on the side of the user, the Internet of Things system gives out significant personal information in maximum detail.
It’s true that it might seem as though IoT devices are executing basic tasks like keeping count of entry swipes at a secure entrance. Regardless, there’s actually a lot of technical complexity involved in developing and running them. The design, development, maintenance, and connecting the best technology to an IoT platform is indeed complicated. Moreover, if they are responsible for the provision of crucial data to another system or workflow, they could cause negative effects to every component connected to it. While losing count of the number of swipes at an entrance point isn’t a huge problem, if another system, however, confuses entry swipe data with temperature data, the results can be very catastrophic. And such errors aren’t always fixed easily.
There can be a great learning curve in the deployment of IoT devices. It is, therefore, logical to create a plan on why and how to launch them before getting them. By so doing, you are guaranteed that they are functioning as they should, and you can provide support for them.
The technologies available today have not actually attained 100% of their capabilities. There is always a gap to fill with them. Hence, it’s safe to say that IoT has a relevant technology in a world that can assist other technologies to attain their accurate and full 100% capability too. We have discussed the major advantages of the Internet of Things above and it’s obvious that it has so many benefits in the business sector.
Nevertheless, we must not only focus entirely on the amazing set of benefits the IoT facilitates and then overlook the significant range of challenges it also creates. The Internet of Things has almost limitless potentials for the future and more work must be done to curb the challenges it brings as well. To thrive in this fiercely competitive global market, businesses must take advantage of the Internet of Things to have a competitive edge and excel.