IoT security spending to rise sharply in 2018, Gartner says

One in five organisations observed at least one IoT-based attack in the past three years

Tags: Gartner Inc. (www.gartner.com/technology/home.jsp)IoT
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IoT security spending to rise sharply in 2018, Gartner says Coordination via common architecture or a consistent security strategy is all but absent, said Contu.
By  David Ndichu Published  March 26, 2018

Gartner forecasts that worldwide spending on IoT security will reach $1.5 billion in 2018 as organisations move to protect the increased number of connected devices.

This figure represents a substantial 28% increase from 2017 spending of $1.2 billion, the research firm says in its latest update.

A recent CEB, now Gartner, survey found that nearly 20% of organisations observed at least one IoT-based attack in the past three years. "In IoT initiatives, organisations often don't have control over the source and nature of the software and hardware being utilised by smart connected devices," said Ruggero Contu, research director at Gartner.

"We expect to see demand for tools and services aimed at improving discovery and asset management, software and hardware security assessment, and penetration testing. In addition, organisations will look to increase their understanding of the implications of externalising network connectivity. These factors will be the main drivers of spending growth for the forecast period with spending on IoT security expected to reach $3.1 billion in 2021,” Contu added.

Despite the steady year-over-year growth in worldwide spending, Gartner predicts that the biggest inhibitor to growth for IoT security in the next two years will come from a lack of prioritisation and implementation of security best practices and tools in IoT initiative planning. This will hamper the potential spend on IoT security by 80%.

"Although IoT security is consistently referred to as a primary concern, most IoT security implementations have been planned, deployed and operated at the business-unit level, in cooperation with some IT departments to ensure the IT portions affected by the devices are sufficiently addressed," explained Contu. "However, coordination via common architecture or a consistent security strategy is all but absent, and vendor product and service selection remains largely ad hoc, based upon the device provider's alliances with partners or the core system that the devices are enhancing or replacing."

While basic security patterns have been revealed in many vertical projects, they have not yet been codified into policy or design templates to allow for consistent reuse. As a result, technical standards for specific IoT security components in the industry are only now just starting to be addressed across established IT security standards bodies, consortium organisations and vendor alliances.

The absence of "security by design" comes from a lack of specific and stringent regulations. Going forward, Gartner expects this trend to change, especially in heavily regulated industries such as healthcare and automotive.

By 2021, Gartner predicts that regulatory compliance will become the prime influencer for IoT security uptake. Industries having to comply with regulations and guidelines aimed at improving critical infrastructure protection (CIP) are being compelled to increase their focus on security as a result of IoT permeating the industrial world.

"Interest is growing in improving automation in operational processes through the deployment of intelligent connected devices, such as sensors, robots and remote connectivity, often through cloud-based services," said Contu. "This innovation, often described as industrial internet of things (IIoT) or Industry 4.0, is already impacting security in industry sectors deploying operational technology (OT), such as energy, oil and gas, transportation, and manufacturing."

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