Towards an internet of secure things

Nieke Roos
Reading time: 5 minutes

With billions, and in the near future potentially trillions, of connected devices, the internet of things is a growing security and privacy threat. Bringing together over 40 partners from academia, industry, government and civil society, the Intersect project is laying the groundwork for an internet of secure things. On 14 and 15 October, the consortium is organizing its first annual conference.

The internet of things is turning out to be one of the weakest spots in our infrastructure. With billions, and in the near future potentially trillions, of devices, the security risks are growing at great rates. While this pervasive network of IoT devices will oversee our lives and economy, it will be completely unmanageable from a security perspective. To compound the risk, IoT systems are often devised and engineered in places beyond our control, and unless we want to surrender our digital sovereignty by only relying on foreign solutions for our national cybersecurity, we need to find a way to secure them regardless.

“We are at a watershed moment in history and if we don’t take action now, we run the risk of being overcome by technology that will fundamentally and irreversibly undermine our cybersecurity and safety. This is not just another issue of data theft – this is about products that can be abused to attack and even destabilize critical infrastructures,” says Harold Weffers, coordinator of the Intersect public-private partnership. “Run in the context of the Dutch National Research Agenda, the Intersect project has the ambition to start a societal transition towards an internet of secure things. In the next eight years, we want to take concrete steps to deliver new approaches to making IoT devices more secure.”

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