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IoT and Data Privacy

IoT Data PrivacyThe Internet of Things (IoT) can produce massive amounts of data. This data has to be transmitted, processed in some way, and then potentially stored somewhere, hopefully securely. (Pollmann, 2017) Much of this data is personal data, and some can be quite sensitive. This brings data privacy questions to the forefront. How secure is the data that is generated by IoT devices? How is it used? What happens to that data once the process is complete? IoT data privacy is key.

When considering data privacy regulations around the world, particularly those required by the EU’s General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) that go into effect in May of 2018, the amount of data generated by the growing IoT is a pressing concern. Both developers and consumers of IoT devices will be held responsible for their use of personal data.

Questions to Consider for IoT Data Privacy

Some of the questions that IoT developers and consumers need to consider:

  • What personal data does my IoT device collect about others?
  • Where is that data sent?
  • How is the data used?
  • Is all of the data collected used, or is there information the device should not collect?
  • Does anyone else have access to the data?
  • Where is the data ultimately stored?
  • How long is the data kept?
  • Do we need to build in an expiration time frame for data storage?
  • How secure is that data during transfer and storage?
  • How will consumers be notified if there is a data breach?

The fines for non-compliance with personal data regulations can be millions of dollars/euros, so it is essential that IoT device manufacturers, as well as those that use them, take the time to understand these regulations, and then consult with attorneys on an approach to personal data use, transfer, and storage. IoT data privacy needs to be built into these devices from the ground up, so that personal information remains secure.

Is your organization developing IoT devices? How do you take IoT data privacy into account? Please share your thoughts and experiences in the comments.

And to learn more about the Internet of Things, check out IEEE Guide to the Internet of Things. This course program will provides the foundation that you need to understand the Internet of Things and some of its industry applications.

 

References

Pollmann, M. (2017, September 25) IoT data is growing fast, and security remains the biggest hurdle. IoT Agenda.

EU General Data Protection Regulation Portal.

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Medical Device Cyber Security is Essential

medical device cyber security

No one wants to imagine that their pacemaker or insulin pump can be hacked when their life depends on the proper functioning of these medical devices. However, a recent Ponemon Institute survey discovered that 67 percent of medical device manufacturers and 56% percent of Healthcare Delivery Organizations (HDOs) think an attack on a medical device in use is likely to occur over the next 12 months (2017 Trip Wire). That information provides an added layer of anxiety for patients, medical providers, and manufacturers, and makes medical device cyber security more important than ever.

There is good news, though. In the last 5 years, healthcare providers and manufacturers have made an effort to include cyber attacks in their contingency plans, and put into place resources to mitigate a potential breach. (2017 TripWire)

These well designed security plans for medical device cyber security include:

  • Dedicated budget for cyber security
  • Cyber security professionals included in the staffing headcount
  • Risk assessments regularly performed by healthcare providers
  • Regularly conduct penetration testing
  • Security awareness and training programs made available
  • And much more…

The US Food and Drug Administration has been making inroads to mitigate any potential attacks with updates to security measures and by seeking to formalize guidelines. As with all guidelines, they do not have to be followed. However, if a provider adopts the recommendations, medical device cyber security can be improved, making the industry and the patient less apprehensive. (2017 TripWire) Not to mention the fact that the provider can use these security measures as a competitive advantage.

Want to learn more about cyber security and how it can affect the healthcare industry? IEEE offers both cyber security and ethical hacking training to help corporations prepare. Learn more about institutional pricing and request a quote here.

References

Newman, L. (2017, March 2) Medical Devices Are the Next Security Nightmare. Wired

(2017, August 27) Highs & Lows of Cyber Security in Healthcare. TripWire

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IoT and Insurance: How IoT Data Will Transform an Industry

IoT and Insurance: How IoT Data Will Transform an IndustryThe insurance industry has always tried to assess risk: how likely is it that something bad will happen? This assessment is based on a number of demographic and other factors that help insurers decide how much risk is involved, and how much premiums will cost. With the evolution of the Internet of Things (IoT), however, insurers have the opportunity to assess risk at a more granular level, opening the way to a new class of products and services that take the data produced by IoT devices into account. The Internet of Things and insurance work together to provide a better customer experience.

For example, Vik Renjen, SVP Sutherland Global Services, predicts that auto insurers will offer “usage-based insurance.” This takes into account “history of speed, distance, turning and braking patterns, time of day and much more from the vehicles of prospective policy owners.” (Reiss, 2016) When insurers take a look at the actual driving patterns of the people they insure, then the best drivers will receive the best prices on their insurance.

IoT devices can also help alert  property owners to events such as fires or water leaks, which can prevent more damage and larger insurance payouts. (Makhluf, 2017) These environmental monitoring systems are inexpensive to install, and alerts can be received through a smartphone. In addition to alerting property owners, IoT systems can also be created to mitigate the problem. For example, a water leak might cause the water valve to be turned off. By using these systems, greater damage and expense can be avoided, which makes these systems a great benefit to insurance companies and property owners alike.

Finally, wearable devices can be used to encourage healthy behaviors and reduce health insurance costs. Insurance company John Hancock, for example, distributed free Fitbits to its customers. This encouraged healthy behaviors, which meant that customers were less likely to file a costly insurance claim. (Drinkwater, 2016) Additionally, wearable health devices help patients and their physicians identify health issues early when they can be treated for less expense, rather than waiting for more serious conditions to develop.

The Internet of Things and insurance is a game-changer, and will only continue to help insurance companies gain insight into the behaviors and risks presented by their customers. This will result in premiums that are better matched to customers, and lower risk for the industry.

Want to learn more about the Internet of Things? Check out the newest course program from IEEE: IEEE Guide to the Internet of Things. Special discount pricing for organizations!

References:

Drinkwater, D. (2016, May 24). 10 Real-Life Examples of IoT in Insurance. Internet of Business.

Makhluf, J. (2017, Sep 5). How IoT is inviting insurers into smart homes. Property Casualty 360.

Reiss, R. (2016, Feb 1). 5 Ways the IoT Will Transform the Insurance Industry. Forbes.

 

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What’s Next for Enterprise-Level Internet of Things?

Internet of Things TrendsThe Internet of Things at an enterprise level needs to be driven by strong vision at the C-level, says Chris Penrose, president of AT&Ts Internet of Things organization. In a recent article in IOT Journal, he laid out some trends for 2017 that will drive enterprise adoption of IOT technology.

Some key points in the article:

  • IOT solutions that transcend borders
  • Data collection that leads to better insights and new technologies
  • Improved performance
  • Lower costs
  • Better results for customers
  • Cybersecurity as a competitive IOT advantage

Read the entire article here.

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New Report: IoT will Help Healthcare Organizations Realize Significant Cost Savings

IEEE Guide to the Internet of Things for HealthcareA recent report from consulting firm Accenture found that the Internet of Things has the potential to offer both healthcare providers and payers significant savings over the next three years. However, only 49 percent of top leadership in healthcare organizations say that they understand what the Internet of Things could mean to their organization, according to the study. Considering that the value of the Internet of Things in healthcare, specifically, could top $163 billion by 2020, it’s important for healthcare organizations to get up to speed quickly on Internet of Things technology for healthcare organizations.

Read the report here.

To learn more about how healthcare organizations can integrate the Internet of Things, check out the new IEEE Guide to the Internet of Things online learning program, which has three modules specifically dedicated to the Internet of Things in healthcare. It’s a convenient way to learn about this emerging technology, and begin to create the strategy to integrate this technology into your organization.

Learn more about our organizational discount pricing here. You can also purchase the training as an individual through IEEE Xplore.

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