Inadequate IoT protection can be a costly mistake

97% of organizations are struggling to secure their IoT and connected products to some degree, according to Keyfactor.

IoT security strategy

The research survey also found that 98% of organizations experienced certificate outages in the last 12 months, costing an average of over $2.25 million.

“Organizations worldwide are under mounting pressure to ensure their IoT and connected devices are protected while navigating an increasingly complex digital landscape that requires complete trust,” said Ellen Boehm, SVP, IoT Strategies and Operations at Keyfactor.

“The results of this survey demonstrate the importance of identity-first security for those who manufacture IoT devices and those who deploy and operate them in their environment to establish digital trust at scale. Most organizations implement PKI solutions in their IoT security strategy, which is a huge step in the right direction. However, it’s clear that with 97% of organizations facing IoT security challenges, security teams are struggling to leverage their tools efficiently. Ensuring that IoT device security is managed throughout its lifecycle will go a long way in both eliminating costly certificate outages and enhancing the long-term viability of IoT within the enterprise,” added Boehm.

Increase in cyber attacks on IoT devices

The costly outages organizations have faced in the past year are not the only expense of inefficient IoT security. The report found that 89% of respondents’ organizations that operate and use IoT and connected products have been hit by cyberattacks at an average cost of $250,000.

Furthermore, in the past three years, 69% of organizations have seen an increase in cyberattacks on their IoT devices. The March attack on Amazon’s Ring that exfiltrated sensitive customer data such as recorded footage and credit card numbers is an example of the increase in IoT attacks.

“Many IoT security strategies fail to prevent and protect against IoT-targeted cyberattacks because organizations lack the proper education and support needed to fully understand the task at hand,” said Boehm. “Over half of respondents agree that their organization doesn’t have the proper awareness and expertise to prepare for IoT device cyberattacks, spotlighting the need for more guidance to fully secure their devices. Organizations can’t protect against what they cannot understand.”

Organizations demand better IoT security

In the past three years, respondents reported a 20% average increase in the number of IoT and connected products used by organizations.

88% of organizations agree that improvements are needed in the security of IoT and connected products in use within their organization, with 37% of respondents reporting that significant improvement is needed and 60% reporting that some improvement is needed.

When it comes to specific strategies, 4 in 10 organizations report that they strongly agree they would benefit from using a PKI to issue digital identities on the IoT and IIoT devices in their environment.

While budgets for IoT device security are increasing year over year, with an anticipated increase of 45% in the next five years, 52% of that budget is at risk of being diverted to cover the cost of successful cyber breaches on IoT and connected products.

Of the respondents surveyed, 48% believed that the manufacturer of IoT or connected devices should be at least mostly responsible for cyber breaches on their products.

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