How Should Your Business Prepare for the Internet of Things?

Smart city and wireless communication network, internet of things
The imminent rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) brings you the potential to give your customers the option to connect to online tools they use every day from a growing range of devices.

But before your business can take advantage of the benefits of IoT, like new product opportunities and real-time data that can bolster operational efficiency, you need to make sure your core IT infrastructure can handle the demands of IoT.

A Pew Research Center report predicts that IoT will be thriving by 2025, which may present a danger to businesses that try to advance their products at the same pace as technological advancements — before updating the systems that support them.

Here are a few suggestions on how to prepare your company infrastructure before it’s crippled by the demands of IoT technology.

Prevent System Downtime 

Technological advancements have created a customer base that expects constant accessibility to applications. If your business plans to introduce applications that run on IoT technology, you want to be able to keep customers happy by offering reliable application uptime.

Your business can minimize system downtime by having a clear business continuity plan (BCP). When business interruptions occur, an off-site cloud recovery platform can protect your IT infrastructure and keep you connected to your data and applications. Constant connection with business data is already imperative, but when it comes to IoT applications, connectivity is invaluable.

Adapt to Fluctuating Data Demands

As IoT technology grows, data demands will only continue to increase. Built on cloud computing and a network of sensors that constantly gather data, IoT could potentially overload any company infrastructure that isn’t prepared to store an increasing amount of data.

The 2016 IBM report “Growing Up Hybrid: Accelerating Digital Transformation” notes that forward-thinking organizations are using hybrid clouds, which utilize public and private clouds, to gain a competitive edge in the implementation of IoT and accommodate its high data demands. Adopting a hybrid cloud model for data vaulting can give your company the ability to get ahead of the impending mass of data that your IoT applications may gather.

Protect the Perimeter

IoT offers you the benefit of leveraging data gathered from users in order to improve products or connect with customers more effectively. However, the increased number of devices connecting to your business network offers more entry points for cyber criminals. Your business can guard against the increased risk of hackers by implementing a strong network security system.

An effective network security strategy should include intrusion detection and prevention, deep packet inspection, port scanning, protocol inspection, perimeter anti-virus and malware blocking. To safeguard your business, look for a network security solution that doesn’t require the purchase of additional modules or applications. Having multiple separate security modules or applications can create gaps in your cybersecurity, making your business more vulnerable to cyber threats like malware and hackers.

Cyber crime has steadily risen in the past few years, and IoT technology promises to contribute to this growing threat. Before offering an application that runs on an IoT device, fortify your company infrastructure so the increased cyber risk doesn’t take you by surprise.

To fully capitalize on IoT, make sure your business has a clear BCP, an adaptable method for data vaulting and a strong network security solution in place.

How does your business plan to implement IoT? Let us know in the comments! 

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