Why the IoT is neither ‘new’ nor ‘revolutionary’ – and why data security is the highest priority

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Jim Hunter, chief scientist at Greenwave Systems, has told delegates at the recent Broadband World Forum that protection of consumer and security of data should be taken seriously and should be at the heart of developing propositions for the Internet of Things (IoT).

The presentation, titled “The Internet of Things about you: Evolving from data to content and what you can do”, advised the audience that the IoT is all about personal data, as the real opportunity is in connecting with people and being able to put individual pieces of data about their lives into context to make it meaningful.

Hunter warned the attendees that while pieces of data in isolation might be harmless, once they are put together and a picture is formed, the information gained could be dangerous if it fell into the wrong hands.

Hunter serves as the co-chair of the Privacy Security Committee on the IoT Consortium, a global group of companies helping to shape the public messaging about IoT. He is working to establish a minimum bar for understanding the importance of privacy and security when developing IoT products. Hunter says that the IoT is not a revolution, but an evolution of compute and about exploring the opportunities which exist in the software that are developed and making it personal.

He concluded: “The term ‘IoT’ is a misnomer – the Internet was always about things connecting so we’re not reinventing the wheel but simply refining it for purpose and for individual users.

“Anyone developing new ideas in this sector would do well to research what successes have already been achieved and build on them – ensuring right from the start that security and the handling of consumer data is given the highest priority.”

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