FRESH DATA: Turns Out Smart Devices Are Dumb About Security

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Pepper and Dark Cubed’s State of IoT Security Report reveals widespread systemic problems within the IoT.

IoT platform and service provider Pepper IoT teamed up with cybersecurity company Dark Cubed to present the State of IoT Security Report. This report — which evaluated nine IoT devices and applications — revealed widespread systemic issues within the IoT. It found that of the smart home devices sold by major retailers nationwide, most still fail miserably with cybersecurity.

See also: IoT Security market could het $10B in by 2025

Dark Cubed’s experts tested and analyzed device privacy and security. Experts designed tests to monitor whether the devices operated as intended and whether the security held up as promised. The tests revealed unexplainable anomalies and communications.

Key Findings

  • While device security is important, the platform plays a more critical role. Because offshore platforms manage the majority of U.S. consumer-connected devices, those platforms lack motivation to maintain high security standards that protect user data. But connected devices require sophisticated, networked platforms that identify and patch vulnerabilities, manage risk, and protect data.
  • Patching can’t fix systemic problems when manufacturers produce devices that lack security from the moment of installation. To adequately protect consumer data, these devices should be secure from day one.
  • The market must prioritize security. Researchers identified several very insecure devices for which neither manufacturers nor platform providers addressed security. It was too easy for these devices to leak sensitive data or open communications with servers in offshore locations.

Participants in the study caution that failure to address the issue of insecure consumer IoT devices — and a lack of respect for consumer privacy — will lead to even further issues. They warn that governments must prioritize regulations that focus on consumer protections. Retailers must also include security discussions as part of the buying process.

“Just as retailers wouldn’t sell unsafe toys, tainted lettuce or products with toxic chemicals, they have a responsibility to sell safe and secure IoT devices to consumers. We are highly motivated to partner with Dark Cubed. Their report highlighted some of the key problems in the IoT market that we are solving. We are committed to working with major retailers and device manufacturers to leverage our trusted U.S.-based platform for secure and private consumer IoT management,” said Scott Ford, CEO at Pepper IoT.

Sue Walsh

About Sue Walsh

Sue Walsh is News Writer for RTInsights, and a freelance writer and social media manager living in New York City. Her specialties include tech, security and e-commerce. You can follow her on Twitter at @girlfridaygeek.

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