Leading American publisher, Consumer Reports (known for publishing quality centric product reviews and product comparisons) has revealed in its press release that it will be issuing a new consumer-protection standard that aims at safeguarding the privacy and security of the consumers.  Consumer report has stressed that very little has been done to curb the increasing cyber attacks taking place across various domains, causing a great deal of loss for general public, governments and companies.

Consumer Reports is not the first organization to work on improving the security and privacy of the customers. In fact a lot of government and non-governmental organizations have been exposing vulnerabilities in products that are connected to the internet. A lot of these initiatives taken by numerous organizations to keep a check of the standards followed while developing IoT devices  have been ignored.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) actively decided on March 1, 2017 to block certain broadband privacy rules that were supposed to have been implemented and taken effect on March 9. This is by far the most recent example of recognized government entities withdrawing its support for greater and more effective privacy laws.

It is clear now that the ‘’Internet of Things” companies are ignoring the security aspect of their products, further exposing them to massive DDoS attacks. Companies prioritizing profits over security and privacy of the consumer is making it easier for hackers to execute their plans.  The attacks are getting more sophisticated day by day with new methods being implemented to expose the vulnerabilities.  Commenting on the initiatives that should be taken to curb cyber attacks, Head of compliance of Red Piranha Kire Jakimoski said, "Hardware and software producers must cooperate together to develop the cyber security of the open internet, because cyber attacks on IoT devices will increase in near future".

There is no doubt that a lot depends on the coordination between various government and non-government entities that would result in safer online world for consumers. However, one must take cognizance of the fact that common sense must be applied to take care of the most common issues in the IoT domain. Robust laws and guidelines should be enforced so that the IoT companies are forced to prioritize the privacy and safety of its customers.

Date Published
March 19, 2017