The Internet of Things (IoT) is being hailed as one of the most disruptive trends in modern history; certainly a transformative way to conduct out physical life. Media and technology companies talk about everything from augmented reality in shopping malls, the current wave biometric health scanners that sync to our fitness devices to smart buildings and even the adaptive robots in something called Industrialization 4.0. We're connecting in ways as never before through devices we never thought as communication portals (cars, light bulbs, security cameras, pacemakers, wind mills etc).
It all sounds facinating and the level of IoT today is just a fraction of what's to come. The question is, will IoT be disruptive in ways we don't want? Can they be as much threat as help?
To gain competitive edge and become successful using these new technologies, we also need to stay clear of the potentially destructive consequences and ask the right "what if" questions such as:
- What if hackers can break into the CAN (controller area network) and ECUs (electronic control units) of a connected car, hence gaining access to control of breaks, ignition, airbags, etc?
- What if life-support systems in a hospital are tampered with by a cyber-terrorist?
- What if hackers can control internet augmented medical devices such as pace-makers and insulin pumps?
- What if my IoT enhanced car breaks down in the middle of the freeway as a result of a new form of ransomware?
- What if the camera feeds on a military vehicle is accessible by foreign states during combat mode?
Guess what, its already been done and there are millions of devices out there in the wild, just waiting to be hacked.