Cellular IoT Security: Market Drivers, Trends, and Opportunities for Service Providers

Cellular IoT Security: Market Drivers, Trends, and Opportunities for Service Providers

In recent years IoT has transformed from a buzzword to a bonafide industry. With an explosion of IoT implementation across industries and markets? It is no surprise that cyber attacks on IoT devices have also seen a dramatic increase.

For mobile network operators and IoT service providers this poses both a challenge and an opportunity. To overcome this challenge and leverage the opportunities of IoT safely, it is important to understand where security fits in their overall IoT connectivity and service offering.

FirstPoint, being a market leader in cellular device security, has conducted an in-depth research of the IoT security market. In this article, we’ll present the insights based on the results of our research.

Key Drivers of Demand for IoT Devices Security Solutions

For cyberattackers, IoT devices offer new vulnerabilities to exploit, de-facto broadening the attack surfaces of operational networks. On the defense side, users and network administrators alike are unaccustomed and unprepared to secure this new and uniquely vulnerable type of devices on their networks.

The vulnerabilities attackers seek to exploit can serve to compromise data privacy, integrity, and the overall operation of devices and networks. Moreover, IoT adoption has presented additional security challenges such as large-scale device upgrades and unsecured legacy infrastructure.

Increased dependence on IoT devices 

Cellular IoT devices require high-speed mobile connectivity, such as that offered by 5G networks. 5G deployment and AI-enabled IoT systems are expected to have the biggest impact in terms of adoption on sectors such as automotive and transport (66%), energy and utilities (47%), and manufacturing (44%). According to a report by Kaspersky Labs, since 2018, IoT usage in industries like finance, hospitality, and healthcare has grown to 8%, 10%, and 10%, respectively.

The cellular network, which is primarily used for mobile phone communication, supports cellular IoT and M2M connectivity. However, cellular networks can present challenges to securing IoT devices. Especially, in industries such as utilities and smart cities where the use of IoT devices impacts the organization’s ability to maintain efficient operations. 

With critical infrastructure cybersecurity taking front and center in the halls of legislature worldwide? It is no surprise that ResearchAndMarkets.com estimated the growth of the critical infrastructure protection (CIP) market from USD 128,912 million in 2020 to USD 152,289 million by 2025.

The reason for the shift industries are making to IoT is clear: IoT devices are efficient, user-friendly, can be operated remotely, save time and money, and reduce manual tasks by improving automation and control. For MNOs, Cellular IoT adoption opens a window of opportunity to monetize IoT security. 

In fact, this is already happening today. To monetize 4G and accelerate 5G trials, the telecommunication industry in India is championing the adoption of IoT, while the global automotive sector is building connected vehicles with Cellular IoT technology baked in. With Cellular IoT devices becoming a key building block for present and future technologies, more stringent security measures are increasingly necessary.

The full version of this article is in our recent report on cybersecurity. To read the full article please download a copy of the report.

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