Thursday, January 20, 2022

Blockchain: The Best Solution for an Unstable IoT?

Blockchain: The Best Solution for an Unstable IoT?

The Internet of Things, (IoT), is becoming a fascinating and important part of our daily lives. However, those throughout the tech industry understand that most of these devices are insecure.

Also read: Coinbase to Take Control of Certain Users’ Bitcoin Wallets

While the average consumer is just excited that Alexa can control his coffee maker, HVAC system and security system, he’s unaware that these devices are collecting volumes of information about him. These devices were also released without any security protocols in place, making them prime targets for hackers.

Soon, IoT devices will process money and information, making them an even bigger target. So, eventually, developers will have to figure out how to keep these devices secure.

Why are IoT Devices Insecure?

According to recent statistics, $8.4 billion worth of connected devices are available on the marketplace.

However:

  • Manufacturers aren’t experts in cybersecurity;
  • Manufacturers are mainly concerned with keeping up with the competition. (The company with the flashiest new IoT devices gets the sales. Security isn’t a priority);
  • IoT devices don’t have enough computing power to carry out advanced encryption processes; and
  • Whenever a manufacturer finds device vulnerability, he has to report it to the government, patch it, re-report it, and then re-release the device to the public. Meanwhile, vulnerable devices can stay in circulation two to six months.

IoT

Because of these vulnerabilities, IoT devices are vulnerable to botnets and ransomware.

The IoT and Currency

Not only are experts concerned about protecting the information that IoT connected devices gather, they are especially concerned about financial transactions that occur between devices and integrated systems.

Blockchain Might Offer a Solution to the Security Dilemma

Blockchain-based platforms are ideal ways to conduct secure, verified transactions. They assure all data is legitimate. They automatically work with cryptocurrency. In addition, blockchain-based platforms can often feature smart contracts, (computer programs that automatically execute the terms of commercial contracts and agreements).

Thus, combining the IoT and the blockchain can create a new, more powerful currency and transaction platform.

Working Solutions

Neuromesh and Iota are two projects that currently combine the IoT with Blockchains. Neuromesh founders have so much confidence in the security of their product that they have called it, “The Unhackable Botnet or A Vaccine for IoT Devices.”

Programmers have designed Neuromesh to work in low-power, low storage environments. To secure their devices, they essentially hijack their own kernel before malicious hackers have has a chance to do so. They then take control over all their devices like a malicious hacker would.

Iota is a cryptocurrency that’s worth around $2 billion. Iota is the 8th most valuable cryptocurrency in the world. However, several vulnerabilities have been discovered along with, “textbook insecure code.” Iota programmers are designing a Blockchain that’s specifically for the Internet of Things. Iota will handle transactions using the Tangle protocol.

First Steps

Though the Internet of Things brings exciting possibilities and new conveniences into our lives every day, it’s crucial for businesses to find a way to secure these devices before they become too integrated into society. The Blockchain does offer tentative solutions. However, these solutions are still a work in progress. It’s important to keep security in mind when you consider buying and using an IoT connected device.

Have you started using IoT devices every day? Do you feel your devices are safe to use? Do you feel safe buying new devices?


Images courtesy of Pixabay and Wikimedia Commons

Bitsonline Email Newsletter

VIDEOS