The Internet of Things has become commonplace, but are the risks of connecting devices to the web really clear?


Copyright: – “What is the Internet of Things?”


The idea of an Internet of Things (IoT) has been around for decades. IoT is an umbrella term for the ability to connect everyday physical objects with other devices over the internet, enabling them to send and receive data. Those everyday devices could be anything from fridges and watches to cars and toilets.

Concepts like these were hinted in TV shows like the Jetsons and Star Trek back in the 1960s. Two decades later, A bunch of Carnegie Mellon boffins made it a reality by plugging in a Coca-Cola vending machine to the ARPANET, a precursor to the modern World Wide Web.

Connected devices have since become ubiquitous. Smart lighting, smartwatches and connected cars that can detect road markings are just three examples of everyday uses for IoT. Many aspects of our lives, such as switching the lights on or predicting when the car needs its next service, will be automated, which will save time, energy and money.

How does IoT work?

Four key technologies enable today’s IoT ecosystems: artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing, cybersecurity and 5G.

AI makes IoT intelligent by helping with real-time data analysis and decision-making. Sensors on connected IoT devices provide real-time data feeds to machine learning algorithms. The more data that’s collected, the better the algorithms can improve the IoT device. For instance, it can inform drivers when they’re about to enter a congested traffic zone or a robot how to avoid collisions.

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Cloud computing facilitates the process of storing, managing and analysing data. Meanwhile, cybersecurity can protect against the risks associated with the data exchange. Many IoT-related networks handle critical national infrastructure, such as power grids, and the impact of a breach resulting from immature IoT technology would be significant.

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