Preparing For A Future With The Internet Of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) is the term we use to describe devices that are embedded with sensors and software and which connect to the Internet. This connectivity enables them to exchange data and carry out additional functions: an IoT bin, for example, can read the barcodes on your food packaging and add a replacement to your next online shopping order. IoT devices are now becoming a regular feature of our lives and, in the future, they are likely to become commonplace. This will have an impact on our homes, our work and the towns and cities in which we live.
Surprisingly, there are nearly 2 billion IoT devices already in use, though this number is expected to grow to a staggering 9 billion by 2020. By this time, the global market for IoT products will have swollen from $1.3 trillion to $3.04 trillion. If you’re looking for a career in IT, there’s never been a better time to start working in the IoT industry. Today there are just 300,000 developers, it is expected that in two years’ time, there will be a need for an extra four million of them.
The increasing potential of IoT
With every advance in miniaturization, wireless connectivity and data storage, the potential of IoT grows. Here are some examples of how it is having an impact ondifferent areas of our lives.
IoT for the consumer
IoT enabled devices can provide augmented intelligence to consumers, giving us access to useful data that helps us make more informed purchasing decisions. High street retailers are already trialing apps which enable you to walk around your home with your phone and see alternative flooring or furniture which you can purchase using the app. All you need is a special camera, which fits on your phone and takes real-time 3d readings of the room so that everything fits perfectly even if you are moving around.
Disney is another company using IoT. Their guests are provided with RFID wristbands, such as those available from Universal Smart Cards that, when placed near a reader, connect customers to their accounts and let them make purchases, access rides and open hotel rooms.
IoT for business
IoT, in conjunction with Bluetooth, is already enabling companies to optimize their processes and make increased efficiencies. By putting Bluetooth tags on stock, equipment and vehicles, businesses can collect and analyzereal-time data about asset location, stock levels and even the condition of critical equipment. If there is a fault with an industrial machine, this IoT system can find it out before the equipment fails, preventing operational downtime.
Lots of businesses are taking advantage of IoT. Dubai Aluminum, for example, used data from IoT devices to increase fuel efficiency by 1.5% and increaseproduction by 3.4%. FedEx, which tracks the location and travelling times of its delivery fleet,has used the information collected to save $9 million a year.
IoT in the city
There are plenty of ways the IoT can be useful in urban areas. IoT CCTV cameras, for example, use AI to recognize suspicious behavior, use facial recognition to track and identify individuals and, as the entire CCTV system is connected over the Internet, can follow a suspect from camera to camera as they travel through the city. This can also be used in conjunction with traffic systems to help cope with heavy traffic or prevent congestion in the event of roadworks or an accident.
IoT devices can also be used for things like street lighting and waste management. The US city of Cincinnati saw a 17% reduction in waste and a 49% increase in recycling when it used IoT enabled bins to monitor those who exceed its waste limits. This was incentivized by charging exceeders on a ‘pay as you throw’ basis.
IoT devices are being used on a national level for the benefit of everyone. Most of the busiest sections of the UK’s motorways, for example, are now ‘smart motorways’. Traffic sensors are used to reduce speed limits, open up hard shoulders and display written warnings to drivers if there’s heavy traffic, poor driving conditions or an incident.
In the NHS, there are already smart devices which patients can use at home to measure blood pressure, heart rate and blood oxygen levels. These devices report the results directly to the patient’s GP or district nursing team and will flag up issues, which require further examination.
Security issues with IoT
For anyone considering a career in IoT, there are plenty of opportunities for those wanting to make improvements to its security. With 70% of IoT devices being vulnerable to hacking, including TVs, webcams, thermostats, smart hubs and even IoT door locks, there are a number of issues that still need rectifying.
Privacy is one of the main issues. Around 80% of devices have privacy concerns, particularly when it comes to the collection of personal data, like credit card details and email addresses. Lack of encryption is a real problem for many devices, especially when the data is in transit, meaning it could get stolen when being sent from the device to the Internet.
Another issue is the vulnerability of a device’s interface. 60% of products were found to have weaknesses, which included persistent cross-site scripting. This enables an attackerto inject malicious code that can infect the device with viruses and ransomware or be used to steal sensitive information.
Poor session management and authorization are also problems. 80% of IoT devices don’t even require users to use a complex password, making them easy targets for brute force hackers who use sophisticated software to crack passwords.
One of the reasons for IoT’s security issues is that many of the products on the market are being developed by smaller startups that lack the resources and know-how to improve security. It’s a new market in which fledgling companies are still learning about the environment in which their products will need to function.Whilst most companies now understand the need for security, many of the first IoT products to hit the market are still vulnerable – some of them don’t even have the capacity for a firmware upgrade that close security holes.
For us to make the most of IoT, there are other challenges that need to be met. One of these is Big data. The amount of data collected by IoT devices is enormous. If a company has a million customers and collects just 1MB of data, per customer, per day, that’s 365 TB per year. All that data has to be collected, stored, processed and analyzed. For an effective IoT, there needs to be speedier connections, bigger storage and faster processing.
Other elements of the IoT infrastructure also need improving. For example, there is a huge demand to extend wireless connectivity. While certainly less expensive than using cable connections, wireless systems can still be expensive. There is a need to find more affordable solutions, especially if we want to bring the benefits of IoT to the third world.
The Internet of Things is opening up our world to a wide range of new and exciting possibilities that can enhance our lives in so many ways. Whilst there are many devices already on the market, we will see numbers increase substantially in the future. However, this technology is, in many ways, a work in progress. There are still vital improvements to be made in security, data analysis and wireless connectivity in order for it to fulfill its promise effectively.
How To Keep Your Personal Information Anonymous And Secure While Using A Web Browser
Browsing the web or checking Facebook a few times a day has recently become something natural as breathing and eating. People wake up, immediately reaching for their phones to be up to date. Is it already an addiction to the Internet? Of course, it depends…
How To Stay More Secure When Using Kubernetes
Kubernetes is an open-source system for automating deployment of new apps and software, and is becoming increasingly popular due to its utility in going back to previous versions. But while lots of developers are excited to take advantage of the benefits and convenience offered by…
If Online Privacy Is Dead, Is There Anything We Can Do?
The online world is both wonderful and frightening in equal measure. On the one hand, we have access to unlimited information and resources, but on the other, we have zero privacy. For most adults, the internet is a part of every aspect of their daily…
Reason To Choose Comodo SSL Certificate To Secure Your Website
It should be clear by now that for your website to survive in this modern era, hacker ridden internet era, it is important for all the information that go on it or through it to be encrypted. To have a website without SSL protection is…
6 Unexpected Security Concerns, and How to Prepare
As powerful as the Internet is right now, it’s impossible to even imagine where it will go over the next years and beyond. But, as fast as security protection continues to improve, hackers seem to improve even more quickly. Everything from new devices to apps…
- 3D Printing
- App Dev
- Artificial Intelligence
- Arts and Entertainment
- Big Data
- Blockchain Tech
- Business Technology
- Car Technology
- Cloud Computing
- Cloud Storage
- Computer and Technology
- Conference Calling
- Coupons and Deals
- Cyber Security
- Dark Left 1
- Data Center
- Data Recovery
- Digital Arena
- Digital Marketing
- Edu Tech
- Email Marketing
- Google Glass
- Guides and Tutorials
- Health and Fitness
- Home Appliance
- Home Improvement
- Home Security
- Internet and Businesses Online
- Internet Marketing
- IT Careers
- Mobile Apps
- Mobile Security
- New Tech
- Online Shopping
- Project Management
- Reference and Education
- Reputation Management
- Sales & Marketing
- Self Improvement
- Shopping and Product reviews
- Small Business
- Social Media
- Tech Trends
- Technical Support
- Technology in Education
- Tips & Tricks
- Tips And Tricks
- Video Conferencing
- Virtual Reality
- Wearable Technology
- Web Design
- Web Development
- Web Hosting
Branding On- And Offline
Creating an effective and impactful presence both on- and offline is vital for your business whether you are a florist or mechanic, a patisserie or a financial advisor. Online Branding Very few businesses exist without some form of website. Whether you pay for someone to…
What Is An Advanced Threat?
When you are on the hunt for business cyber security solutions, you are almost certain to come across products in a category called advanced threat protection. These security tools are available both as software or managed services and differ in approaches to security; some might…
Online Security Tips You Might Not Know About
Technology is now playing a major role in our daily lives. From how we work to how we spend our leisure time; it is central to us all now. Of course, a tech advance that has transformed our lives the most is the internet. While…
Here’s How Proxies Can Aid Email Protection
Are you concerned about your email protection measures? If that is the case, then this is for you. It all began in November 2014 with leaked emails from Sony Movie Pictures. After this leakage of emails went viral all over the world, people, organizations and…
3 Ways to Prepare For Cyber Security Risks That Employees Must Know
In a world where everything is much easier to do via mobile, app, or device, technology is not going to slow down. We’re all guilty of potentially owning more than one device, whether that is our personal phones, work phones, tablets or fitness trackers. All…
Non-Negotiable Elements For Your Business IT Security Plan
In 2019, having a business IT security plan is more important than ever. An IT security plan is the first line of defense you have for protecting your business – and your clients – against cybercriminals. Cybercriminals include hackers, who frequently obtain personal information with…