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Always Something New

As technology in every industry grows by leaps and bounds, there will always be something new to talk about. However, the Internet of Things seems to cross all boundaries, and within an industry IoT becomes the building automation tool to make it all work.

IoT is becoming an increasingly growing topic of conversation both in the workplace and outside of it. In fact, the residential consumer may be benefitting more from this technology than big business right now. Big in terms that analyst firm Gartner predicts that global spending on security for devices that fall under IoT will reach $348 million this year. This is a nearly 24 percent increase from 2015 ($281.5 million).

Obviously, the world of IoT has seen a significant move forward in the recent years. By analyzing last year’s growth and predicting the growth of IoT security spending in 2016, Gartner was able to predict that the worldwide spending in 2017 will reach $434 million, and 2018 will see an IoT spending of $547 million.

According to Gartner, the market for IoT security products is dependent on IoT adoption by both the consumer and the industry. This concept has the potential to impact how we live and work, and perhaps, has the power to bring both together at some point.

Paul Dawes is the executive vice president and general manager of Icontrol, based in the Silicon Valley, Calif. He says IoT plays a major role in the future of the security industry. As security systems become “connected,” meaning they send information to the cloud and enable remote connectivity from the end user via mobile apps or the web, they are becoming part of an entire connected ecosystem of other devices playing different roles in the home.

“When all of those devices interoperate and they communicate with each other, they all become smarter and provide more benefits to the end user,” Dawes said. “For example, let’s say I have a connected door lock, lighting control system and learning thermostat in my home along with my security system, and they are all part of an integrated smart home system. Imagine the convenience of driving within a block of my home where my lights automatically turn on, thermostat adjusts to my desired temperature, garage door unlocks and my security system disarms.”

This is the role IoT plays in the security industry, and it’s just the beginning of a new set of features that will eventually become transparent to consumers and part of their everyday lives. The more things that become connected, the more secure, efficient and convenient peoples’ homes (and lives) will be.

The new rule of the future will be, ‘Anything that can be connected, will be connected.’ Here is an interesting IoT example: Let’s say you are on your way to a meeting; your car has access to your calendar and already knows the best route for you to take. What if your office equipment knew when it was running low on supplies, and automatically reordered more? For coffee drinkers, when your alarm clock wakes you up at 6 a.m., the technology of IoT will ping the coffee maker and start brewing coffee for you.

From the Honeywell 2015 annual report, David M. Cote, chairman and CEO, brought out the necessity and adoption of IoT. Five years ago, Honeywell began their journey to become a Capability Maturity Model Integrated (CMMI) Level 5 across their entire network of companies. Lever 5 was developed at Carnegie Mellon University and is considered a best practice model to create more robust software from the beginning reliably.

“CMMI Level 5 is even more important as we enter the cyber-physical era… the Internet of Things,” Cote said. “Historically, it has been digital/digital and the downside to a “bug” is not that big and easily fixed. If your plant shuts down, your power goes out or your plane doesn’t work (security systems included), that’s a horse of a different color.”

The truth of the matter is: IoT is not just one thing. Steve Van Till, president and CEO of Brivo, said IoT is not one type of phenomenon and more than the cloud is one application or even one class of applications.

“The term IoT is simply a convenient label for grouping together all the different types of connected devices that are emerging across many distinct consumer and industrial market segments,” Van Till said. “As in the definition quoted above, they have some fundamental building block characteristics in common—small, connected, data-rich, controllable, and integrated into things—but that’s often where the similarities end.”

Samsung’s Artik platform is joining with Thales to introduce digital trust across connected devices, applications and platforms. This is technology may help security staff that reply on a smartphone to inspect remote locations, for instance. The Samsung IoT platform is supported by Thales’s cryptographic solutions to provide cryptographic key generation, verification, signing and key management.

The interoperability of all these devices ranges from complex and sophisticated products such as home appliances, mobile devices, TVs to lightweight and small accessories such as lamps, thermometers, switches and sensors. This is where the security industry hits the ground running as far as sensors are involved.

“In the new world of connected everything, trust and security are critical to the interaction of devices, people and things,” said Peter Galvin, vice president of strategy, Thales e-Security.

This article originally appeared in the June 2016 issue of Security Today.

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