Intelligence agencies: Beware of smart city 5G and IoT risks

Smart cities face cyber hazards from technology like 5G and the internet of things, according to the Five Eyes intelligence partnership, which is made up of agencies from five countries under the leadership of the US.

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The Five Eyes Alliance, an intelligence alliance comprising the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand, has highlighted the potential cyber risks faced by smart cities due to technologies like 5G and the internet of things (IoT). They have issued a set of guidelines called Cybersecurity Best Practice for Smart Cities, cautioning that smart cities can be attractive targets for malicious cyber actors. These actors may be enticed by the sensitive data held by governments, businesses, and private citizens, as well as vulnerabilities in the complex artificial intelligence-powered software systems used in smart cities.

The alliance has specifically urged smart city stakeholders, including local governments and companies offering services like waste management, to reconsider the need for connecting various elements such as garbage cans and traffic lights to the internet. While integrating public services into a connected environment can enhance efficiency and resilience in our communities’ day-to-day life, the guidance emphasises the importance of thoroughly assessing and mitigating the cybersecurity risks associated with such integration, especially for communities considering the transition to becoming smart cities.