What is IOT?
The ability to access devices through a smartphone or through a computer is called IoT. It started in the early 1980s when Carnegie Mellon University students developed the first internet-connected device. “It was a Coke vending machine that would tell the programmers if the soda was cold enough for them to want to make the trip from their desks to the machine.”
Other IoT devices, for example, your refrigerator can adjust the temperature accordingly and similarly with the air conditioner, it will set the temperature accordingly with the outside temperature. Moreover, IoT devices are mini computers, connected to the Internet and are vulnerable to malware and hacking. However there are many benefits of using IoT in our daily lives making our lives more convenient. For example, smart voice assistants listen to commands from users and perform those tasks, security devices monitoring in your home to turn on and off lights and to protect your home, etc. How does the Internet of Things (IoT) work though?
IoT has four distinct components given below
The first step is to collect data from the environment by the devices or the sensors in order to analyze the environment behavior. It could be temperature reading. For example, a mobile phone is a device not a sensor but it has multiple sensors including GPS, camera and accelerator.
After collecting the data from the environment, the data is sent to the cloud through a variety of methods including Wifi, Bluetooth, low-power wide-area networks, cellular satellite etc. The device chooses the best methods to transfer based on the versions and the environment and they accomplish the second task by sending data to the cloud.
- Data processing
When the data gets into the cloud, software makes analyzes and performs based on the data received. For example, it could be checking if the temperature reading is within an acceptable range or to identify objects by using computer vision on video. However in this step, it does not make any extra decisions, such as, if the temperature is too hot or if there is an intruder in your house.
- User Interface
After the data processing component, the user interface plays an important role by getting an alert of the high temperature or intruder in a house via email, text, notifications, etc. Also, with the help of an app or website, users can actively check the updates on the temperature. With the advanced growth of the technology to fulfill people’s demand and to make it more convenient, users can remotely adjust the temperature of the house via an app on the phone. Moreover, some actions are done automatically like the vacuum robot.
How can you protect your IoT from being hacked?
After understanding how the IoT works, we can tell that hackers will mess up with the data that is to be sent to the cloud to perform some activities. According to the Symantec 2017 Internet Security Threat Report, IoT devices are being attacked on an average of every two minutes. “Cybercriminals have already hacked unsecured IoT devices to use their processing power in large-scale cyberattacks.” Since the IoT is connected to the network, the best ways to protect the device from the attacker is to make sure that your router is secure. A Wi-Fi router is the front door to your online world. Also, make sure to turn off bluetooth if you are not using it and always make sure to update the new version and software.