IoT sensor networks are used for monitoring and reacting to physical characteristics of building environments (e.g. temperature, pollution and humidity levels, and electrical usage) and the National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE) aims to improve the security and functioning of these systems. As part of the process, the NCCoE published the ‘Security for IoT sensor networks: Building management systems’ case study, which describes different technological parts of the networks and accompanying security challenges, asking for public input in shaping and refining the scope of the project.
The Internet of Things (IoT) includes a wide range of Internet-connected devices, from highly digitalised cars, home appliances (e.g. fridges), and smart watches, to digitalised clothes that can monitor health. IoT devices are often connected in wide-systems, typically described as 'smart houses' or 'smart cities'.
Cybersecurity is among the main concerns of governments, Internet users, technical and business communities. Cyberthreats and cyberattacks are on the increase, and so is the extent of the financial loss.
Yet, when the Internet was first invented, security was not a concern for the inventors. In fact, the Internet was originally designed for use by a closed circle of (mainly) academics. Communication among its users was open.
Cybersecurity came into sharper focus with the Internet expansion beyond the circle of the Internet pioneers. The Internet reiterated the old truism that technology can be both enabling and threatening. What can be used to the advantage of society can also be used to its disadvantage.