IoT Security in the Age of Ransomware Threats

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Your assets should always be visible, but not to hackers.

Ransomware attacks are on the rise. In 2020, there were a total of 52 major cyber attacks in the US alone, and at least 120 worldwide so far in 2021. These attacks are primarily targeting the manufacturing, education, public services industries as well as government operations.

As these attacks get more advanced, ransoms reach into the millions, and hackers get more experienced, no industry or company seems safe. Securing company systems is of paramount importance now more than ever.

IoT Devices

Most ransomware attacks target sensitive company data, but if your company uses IoT technology to track physical assets, you’re dealing with a whole new set of vulnerabilities. Since individual devices, such as location-sharing Bluetooth beacons, fleet vehicle computers, worksite gates, etc. are vulnerable points that hackers can gain control of, more physical assets are at serious risk.

Hackers look for weak points, such as passwords, computers left unlocked, or simple cracks in third-party systems. Holding this information hostage with the threat that ransoms will double and/or that the stolen data will be deleted or exposed, hackers can extort millions from a company. With IoT components in a system, a theft and other forms of corporate sabotage are possible.

For instance, construction sites routinely face theft of resources. Companies that use IoT technology to track physical assets on sites are at risk of IoT hacking. Locked gate codes, heavy equipment location data, and controls to company smart vehicles are all potential IoT hackers’ targets. This kind of risk of theft, property damage, and personnel safety is something that cannot be underestimated.

Security Features

When looking to implement an IoT ecosystem for your asset management needs, here are a few security features to look for in a potential solution:

  • Encryption – At its most basic level, data encryption is a process where data is scrambled to keep unauthorized people from seeing what is being sent. Recipients of this data contain a key that helps them decrypt or unscramble the data into plain text.  Apptricity beacons can transmit data through 128 and 256-bit encryption, ensuring that your data is safe from unwanted onlookers.
  • Non-Broadcast Visibility – Traditional Bluetooth beacons are broadcasted with open visibility, meaning anybody can see your device and attempt to connect to it. While many require a specific password to connect to, this is a weak form of security that can be easily exploited by hackers. Apptricity’s Bluetooth Protocol is not broadcasted publicly and cannot be connected to by unrecognized devices.
  • Secure Protocols – Common Bluetooth protocols such as Eddystone and iBeacon are used by many commercial Bluetooth products to allow any device to connect to them. While this protocol is effective for products like speakers, headphones, and watches, it lacks the additional security measures needed for IoT-driven business. Apptricity’s proprietary Bluetooth protocol gives a unique ID to each client’s business, ensuring that any beacon you use can only be seen by your company.

Apptricity’s Solution

Apptricity’s IoT platform gives you immediate insight into the location, usage, and condition of your company’s important assets. With a combination of cutting-edge hardware and cloud-hosted software, Apptricity provides everything you need to deploy a secure asset management solution.

To learn more about IoT enterprise asset management systems and secure Bluetooth beacons ask for a free demo at Apptricity today!

Learn More

For more details about Apptricity’s Enterprise Asset Management software with real-time capabilities — and why you need them — schedule a demo or request more information!

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