IoT brings new and unfamiliar risks: Aruba CTO

Networks Asia staff
Networks Asia

By 2019, 86% of organizations in Asia Pacific will have some form of IoT in place, according to research from Aruba.

While organizations adopt IoT to leverage the business benefits of enhanced efficiency and innovation across the enterprise, industrial, healthcare, retail and municipality sectors globally, the study warns that connecting thousands of things to existing business networks will open up new security challenges, which has resulted in security breaches for a large majority of organizations in the region.

The research also found that although 97% of the 1,150 respondents from Asia Pacific (Australia, China, India, Japan, Singapore, and South Korea) have an understanding of IoT, many are still unclear of the exact definition of IoT and what value it brings to their organizations.

So what does IoT really mean and how can enterprises take advantage of it? In an interview with Networks Asia, Partha Narasimhan, Aruba HPE’s Chief Technology Officer, talks about the objective of IoT, the value it offers, the risks it brings.

Excerpts of the interview follows:

1. What is true IoT? How does IoT differ from M2M communication and machine learning?

The objective of IoT is to extract actionable data and contextual information like location from devices and systems for the purpose of meeting a company’s strategic goals.  Machine-to-machine and control networks are tools thru which data and context can be extracted, while machine learning is a tool for making sense of and applying these data and context. Working in concert, these tools help companies deliver more engaging services, boost profitability, and enhance productivity and safety.

2. How can enterprises take advantage of IoT? How would it fit into plans to digitally transform their business?

The first order of business in any IoT project is to identify the customer's strategic business goals. Those goals will then flow down into a series of specific objectives that deliver what Gartner calls “business moments” – transient, customer-related opportunities that can be dynamically exploited. A business moment is the point of convergence between the enterprise’s strategic goals and relevant IoT context and data that when properly exploited will positively change a customer’s behavior, attitude, and/or sentiment.

Many vendors position IoT as a way to connect every device in an enterprise to the Internet, which is self-serving because it requires customers to buy a lot of equipment, software, and services. The overarching objective of IoT is not to network every device in an enterprise, much less connect every device to the Internet. IoT devices should be considered vessels for context and data, and only relevant information – and devices - need to be connected and tapped. Digital transformation in the context of IoT involves generating, extracting, or finding relevant data and context, and through the IoT architecture using it to deliver successful business moments.



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