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The Internet of Things

Just read an article on the Internet of Things on Green Biz.

This article has some very good examples of some applications that can be created and the benefits that can arise when things start being connected. And the how the convergence of the Internet of things and big data can drive sustainability efforts.

How ever I feel that the article downplays some of the risks involved in the Internet of Things.

The very last paragraph:

“Other barriers are the privacy and security issues associated with the Internet of Things. There is some concern that many connected devices, whether smart meters or medical equipment, do not have adequate security protections and personal data can be misused. The risk is that technology providers, in a rush to bring out products in a hot area, will treat security and data privacy as afterthought.”

only just mentions the security risks associated with the Internet of Things.

Yet it is not hard to find expressions of concern about this new endeavor. While most people can see significant benefits occurring, there are downsides.

“Security was one of the most immediate concerns. “Most of the devices exposed on the Internet will be vulnerable,” wrote Jerry Michalski, founder of the think tank REX. “They will also be prone to unintended consequences: they will do things nobody designed for beforehand, most of which will be undesirable”.

I started looking at the Internet of Things as I looked at improving some aspects of my home. Smart lighting, electronic door locks, Internet enabled heating & cooling, etc. just modernizing my 40+ year home. Again security issues were very quickly raised and even introduced me to a new term ransomware where malware takes over your equipment and someone else asks for payment to unlock the equipment.

There are lots of devices that are becoming “Smart” including toilets, and the prices are falling. But even the toilet can be hacked

So until there is better security around the Internet of Things I am going to be a laggard, not a leader. After all I do not want my doors to unlock themselves, the AC & Heating to run at someone else’s command, nor  do I want my toilet to continually flush.

So are you diving into the Internet of Things? Is your company? Do you have any concerns?

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  • Hi there John. I too am on the ledge here. I have seen a handful of awesome devices, which certainly spark an interest, but I am not sure how much I trust them. Something like the Ring Doorbell could be tremendously beneficial for a lot of people, especially those with disabilities. Plus, I don’t necessarily see how a simple doorbell could cause a safety concern.

    However, others are a little more concerning. One of the latest smart locks would be much different. From what I’ve ready, they’re not ready for prime time and as you said, they’ll unlock and lock, without warming or prompting. This is very concerning and it gives me grave concern.

    At this time, I must hold off, until the devices have improved. Instead, I’ll stick with a smart television and smart phone, but nothing more. I am eager for the future, when these devices are reliable though! Good read!