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The enormous number of smart gadgets (from highly impacting to utter useless) conceived in recent years sprouting from the rise of Internet of Things (IoT) technology,propels the communication industry to define next generation interconnection requirements and resolutions to overcome security, power consumption and management challenges. I recollect reading the novel ‘The Prey’ by the famous writer Michael Crichton, where the plot involves highly intelligent nanobot swarm (a product of nanotechnology, genetic engineering and artificial intelligence) deciding to break free from the test lab and penetrate the living and bring havoc. While today’s IoT devices lack such intelligence, the threat to the living still persists- via hackers.
By 2020, the total IoT devices connected to the network has been predicted to be more than 20 billion. Currently, the IoT industry is not working on any security standard that these devices would need to comply with to get connected to the network. Poorly secured IoT devices would be an easy target by hackers and especially each connected devices in the network would also make the business network infrastructure vulnerable to attacks. While it may take time for the IoT industry and manufacturers to develop a security standard guideline, a first level of security can already be achieved by controlling the network via software defined network (SDN).
SDN allows designing of security applications dependent on the service type (prioritizing and segmenting) and also making the network itself agile to attacks such that suspicious actions could be identified via cyber-patrol applications and either blocked or diverted to secure the users and the network itself. Additionally with the help of artificial intelligence and machine learning, the network could morph the responsive adequately and learn from attacks to prevent similar actions in the future. SDN can only reduce the risk however our data is ultimately only as secure as our devices are.