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In a previous blog we mentioned the Internet of Things (IoT) and how it is changing the approach towards cybersecurity. Predictive analytics is increasingly becoming an integral part of the security game, as companies invested in IoT use analytics to identify attacks before they happen, an important step in the evolution of security. As IoT continues to increase its share of the IT market and also changes the way we use technology in everyday life, we must adjust our cybersecurity policies to take into account this fundamental shift in security needs.

IoT is also a big driver in the digital transformation of company infrastructure, as organizations respond to the changing needs and demands of their customers for more technology integration. In fact, research findings published by Inmarsat say that IoT has become the leading reason for digital transformation and is the number one priority for 92% of organizations.

As companies go through digital transformation and incorporate IoT, they need to keep security top-of-mind. Gartner states that "by 2020, 60 percent of digital businesses will suffer major service failures due to the inability of IT security teams to manage digital risk". Organizations cannot afford to have long periods of downtime due to cyberattacks or an insecure infrastructure.

Gartner has reported on six cybersecurity principles that can help you to transform your IoT security policy. At the root of these principles is the ability to be resilient, a quality that every person and every business should work to develop.

How to transform your security policy for IOT

  1. Incorporate risk-based thinking. Following only what the auditors tell you is important in your security and compliance "checklist" will result in your business missing out on the truly big risks your business will face, ones that may not be on that checklist and have more to do with creating a "big-picture" security plan.

  2. Think about organizational outcomes. You can't think just about protecting infrastructure. You also have to think about what outcomes your organization to have, and how you can protect those outcomes.

  3. Facilitate balance instead of "no-matter-what" defense. Loyalty is a good trait in an employee, but it shouldn't stop someone from pointing out when something could be done better. Resist the urge to only consider one narrow version of security, and instead work together on new ideas that help your business grow and increase security.

  4. Understand the flow of information. Don't try to narrowly focus on how information "should" flow; instead look at where it actually is coming from. Digital technology and the IoT will have a lot of different information sources to keep up with, and you have to understand all of those sources in order to develop an accurate picture of how to secure that data.

  5. Focus on personal behavior. More than focusing on what technologies you need to use for security, focus on your employees' behaviors and beliefs around security. You should attempt to motivate people to have more accountability and place more trust in their security behaviors, instead of just trying to control the behavior. If you can explain why the behavior is important to the security policy, it will increase understanding and motivate people to modify their own behaviors, instead of having to painfully restrict everything, which can make jobs more of a headache.

  6. Take a proactive approach. Instead of just responding to security threats, start proactively monitoring threats with data analysis and human intervention, which can help to stop attacks before they start or at least mitigate the time spent recovering. IoT data can especially benefit from this monitoring technology,. While IoT supplies lots of data for monitoring, it also requires an increased complexity in data monitoring.

There are many ways you can up your security game to keep pace with digital transformation and the IoT. Services such as Log Monitoring or an overall Security Monitoring System are an important part, but just one part, of the equation.

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