For many businesses, the Internet of Things (IoT) is already becoming an essential technology. According to our IoT Spotlight Report, 61% of businesses have enjoyed significant value and return on investment from IoT technology.
For many adopters, IoT helped maintain business continuity throughout the COVID-19 crisis (84%), changed their approach to analytics and the value of data (86%) and improved their core business strategy (87%).
How secure is IoT technology?
Before we look at how IoT can help your workplace security, it’s worth considering just how secure IoT is. While having millions of connected products can create millions of entry points for cyberattacks, IoT security is constantly evolving to meet these new challenges.
Encryption and authentication are being deployed to help make endpoints more secure. Cloud security and network monitoring play a role in ensuring the entire network stays healthy.
As a result, the benefits of IoT outweigh the security concerns for many. Only 18% of businesses listed security concerns as a barrier to IoT deployment in the IoT Spotlight Report.
This may be because a large percentage (61%) believed data collected from their devices had no value to a hacker. As a result, almost three-quarters (74%) said concerns about IoT security were no greater than for any other new technology.
What IoT can do for workplace security
As the name suggests, the underlying purpose of the Internet of Things is to connect “things”. As such, it enables devices to be digitally connected to networks that were previously standalone and analogue.
One of the simplest ways IoT can improve the security of your workplace is in building surveillance. Many companies still rely on analogue CCTV to protect their workplaces and buildings. These older systems can be insecure, inaccessible and expensive to maintain.
For example, footage is stored locally and needs to be accessed onsite. If you want information from the CCTV, it has to be copied onto removable media with limited storage capacity.
Using IoT and cloud, businesses can add a digital layer to their video surveillance security without having to rip and replace existing CCTV cameras. The cameras are connected to IoT SIM-based encoders with external SSD for storing footage. The encoders are connected over a secure mobile network to a cloud-based management platform.
IP-enabled cameras can be introduced and connected to the network in your own time.
Such a service provides end-to-end security and access control, as well as full compliance to data protection guidelines. All footage is encrypted and transmitted as and when needed.
Another area where IoT can help improve security is in the day-to-day running of buildings. Businesses often deploy systems from multiple suppliers that typically operate in silos and are unable to connect to each other.
With the aid of IoT, it is possible to integrate security, lighting, fire and safety systems, gaining control and oversight of all critical buildings systems via a single platform.
CCTV, fire alarms, lighting and heating systems can be connected without having to rip and replace. Data from critical building systems can be accessed securely via most web-enabled devices in real-time, anytime, anywhere.
By integrating security and other systems, you minimise risk while making your building more efficient.
An energy management service is often more secure, monitored, protected and encrypted than a plethora of individual systems. Combining all the systems over a single secure network reduces the threat of disruption to your critical building systems.
Collecting all data through a single service should make it easier to be compliant with data collection legislation. It’s also easier to deploy regular updates to firmware and systems.
Another security benefit comes from eliminating equipment downtime and extending the lifetime of energy and operations assets. Equipment is serviced when it needs to be, rather than when your maintenance agreement dictates.
Integrating building sensors and systems gives you total visibility to monitor, control and manage sites across the globe. You can view all your data from a single dashboard accessed from any web-capable device.
IoT is a core technology component in providing the connectivity, intelligence, analytics and visibility to get the most out of your workplaces.