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Successfully fortify your IOT security – here’s how

Johannesburg, 25 Jun 2024
Security breaches are becoming increasingly sophisticated – and costly, with Forbes predicting that cyber attacks will be costing the global economy more than US$10.5 trillion by the end of this year.
Security breaches are becoming increasingly sophisticated – and costly, with Forbes predicting that cyber attacks will be costing the global economy more than US$10.5 trillion by the end of this year.

It just takes one unsecured device, one compromised entry point, for a nefarious individual to gain illicit access to your company’s entire network. You don’t want to become another statistic.

Security breaches and cyber attacks are growing in frequency and ferocity and becoming increasingly sophisticated. They’re draining company coffers too, with Forbes predicting that cyber attacks will be costing the global economy more than US$10.5 trillion by the end of this year.

The importance of secure and reliable network connectivity to businesses today is indisputable.

If you’re in the time-sensitive logistics industry, what if your fleet management system was compromised, causing widespread delivery delays that left customers angry and your hard-earned reputation irrevocably damaged?

What about the highly regulated healthcare industry, where sensitive personal data needs to be carefully safeguarded? Consider the chaos should a clinic’s connected medical devices experience a security breach, exposing patient data and disrupting critical care services.

For those operating in the mining or oil and gas sectors, imagine a scenario where your drilling operation suffers a data breach so significant that it totally disrupts production, causing significant financial loss.

Where remote IOT solutions are concerned and for enterprises operating IOT solutions globally, finding a product that offers resilient and highly secure connectivity is paramount.

Building a secure connectivity foundation

“Secure global connectivity is about so much more than maintaining uninterrupted business operations. It's about creating a resilient framework capable of withstanding and repelling cyber threats in any shape or form,” says David Farquharson, founder and CEO of iONLINE Connected Networks, a leading global cellular connectivity provider.

Enterprises cannot afford to overlook the security of their connectivity solutions, Farquharson continues. “A breach in this foundational layer will have a knock-on impact that puts sensitive data at risk and erodes customer trust. The foundation of every enterprise's security strategy rests on robust connectivity.”

David Farquharson, iONLINE founder and CEO.
David Farquharson, iONLINE founder and CEO.

As businesses extend their operations across borders, embrace cloud computing, employ a remote workforce and increase their use of internet of things (IOT) devices, a secure connectivity foundation becomes even more imperative.

If they lack proper security measures, IOT devices and components integrated into a network could in fact introduce new attack vectors and vulnerabilities. It only takes a single device to be infiltrated for unlimited access to be gained to an entire network.

Addressing network security at enterprise level

Security is multi-layered and without all the layers in place, a solution is vulnerable. While many IOT connectivity companies rely on a single security layer, the VPN, iONLINE’s approach is holistic.

“At iONLINE, we enhance security by safeguarding all network entry and exit points and designing purpose-built private network architectures tailored for each customer,” explains Farquharson. “This isolated approach eliminates exposure to the primary security threats commonly found in traditional VPN-based IOT networks.”

iONLINE’s approach is multi-faceted. Unified threat management (UTM) has been implemented on all edge devices and DPI inspection platforms that employ rule-based signature transaction filtering on network traffic. In addition, firewalls robustly defend against multiple layers of attack. Traffic is routed into core data centres over a private layer two network, and from there, the next destination is determined, moving via various breakout network options.

Farquharson explains: “By doing all of this, we ensure that data remains within the private network, moving directly into a client's infrastructure, bypassing potential security threats from the inherently vulnerable internet.”

FlexiSIM: A fully customisable connectivity solution

iONLINE’s premier IOT connectivity solution is the programmable eUICC SIM card, FlexiSIM, which has numerous built-in security features such as keys and credentials. Robust security is also deployed on all SIM cards and in the methods used to authenticate them, preventing unauthorised access.

With its multi-network resilience, FlexiSIM provides local and global connectivity, ensuring the best connection at all times for supported devices. It connects in more than 189 countries, on over 700 carriers, and can be remotely updated with new carrier information over the air for supported devices. This lets you control in which countries and to which carriers the SIM can connect, unlocking new coverage when you need it.

Several international organisations already benefit from FlexiSIM, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), AIoTSense and Fidelity ADT. Fidelity ADT is the largest security services provider to large-scale enterprises in southern Africa. They use thousands of FlexiSIM SIM cards to run their operations and keep their staff, the public and the assets in their care safe. This includes critical infrastructure such as airports, government, health and education departments, as well as hospitality venues, casinos, shopping centres and residential housing estates and their occupants.

To see FlexiSIM’s full range of features and benefits, click here. If you’re ready to move forward and would like to schedule a free demo with one of our IOT experts, use this link.

The future of IOT and network security

The IOT is a huge, interconnected network of devices communicating across global platforms. However, its very nature means that, fundamentally, it is wrought with security vulnerabilities. Each IOT device is a potential way in for attackers, and those devices that lack robust built-in security measures are even more susceptible to hacking, data breaches and illicit access.

“As IOT continues to penetrate critical infrastructure and enterprise systems, securing these devices, networks and systems become a company imperative,” says Farquharson. “Unfortunately, as the IOT landscape evolves, so do the threats. Ensuring you have the right expertise at your disposal and have partnered with the right company to deliver the secure solutions you need is how you guarantee longevity, scalability and success.”

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iONLINE Connected Networks is a leading connectivity provider that delivers cutting-edge technology solutions to businesses around the world. iONLINE’s flagship product is its multi-network-resilient global IoT connectivity solution, FlexiSIM™, which connects in 189+ countries, on over 700 carriers. With offices in South Africa, the UK, the USA and Australia, iONLINE is dedicated to providing exceptional customer service and ensuring that its clients remain connected in a constantly changing world. Furthermore, iONLINE is committed to promoting positive change for both society and the environment, reflecting its dedication to corporate social responsibility.

Editorial contacts

Toni Muir
Content editor iONLINE Connected Networks
(0861) 466 546