For the past decade, manufacturers have been rushing to fulfill the promise of the Internet of Things. The deployment of 5G, which enabled smartphones and smartwatches, has led the way for smart fridges, smart vacuums, smart pacemakers, smart security, and a whole host of connected consumer products.
By the end of 2022, there were an estimated 7 billion IoT devices in the world, each one packed with software. This exponential growth has presented opportunities to malign actors to exploit potential weaknesses for criminal gains. According to Microsoft's 2022 Digital Defense Report, IoT devices are the key entry point for many attacks. In December 2022, the CEO of Zurich Insurance, Mario Greco, said that cyberattacks could pose a larger threat to insurers than systemic issues like pandemics and climate change, and as a result, could become uninsurable.
2022 is seen by many experts as the inflection point for IoT security, and governments have begun to protect individuals, businesses, and key infrastructure. Last year on The Critical Lowdown, we predicted that 2023 would be the year of IoT security, and so it has proved. In the UK, the PSTI Act has passed into law, the EU Cyber Resilience Act is progressing in Brussels, and the US IoT Cybersecurity Improvement Act of 2020 has been bolstered by new cybersecurity measures in the 2022 Appropriations Bill. The legislation is tightening, and the consequences are getting even more significant.
To navigate this complex security ecosystem, we have assembled a panel of the industry's foremost experts to discuss the legislation, threats, technology, distribution, and solutions.