Sensor Security in Manufacturing and Construction IoT Applications

Sensor Security in Manufacturing and Construction IoT Applications

Published March 30, 2017 by SecureRF in Cryptography, IoT Security

Manufacturing and construction depend on large networks of sensors, actuators and controllers to operate, control and monitor systems and processes. Much of the equipment used in these industries comes with built-in devices for sensing, data collection and communicating.

IIoT sensor securityThe data flowing through these devices helps both industries meet a number of requirements including efficiency, safety, quality and productivity. A successful attack can compromise any or all of these areas. For example, hacked sensors may allow a defective product on an assembly line to pass as “safe,” or transmit incorrect information about the load-bearing capacity of a bridge.

The vulnerabilities of sensors and controllers in manufacturing and construction have grown significantly in recent years, for several reasons. One is simply that there are more of these devices in use, which increases the attack surface available. Another is that the devices and their networks are highly customized. For example, no two manufacturing plants are identical, and building information models are different for every structure. This means there is a greater variety of deployment architectures and scenarios that make every structure unique, even if they use the same device model.

A third reason for the increase in vulnerabilities is that the devices are often located in remote areas and left unattended for long periods. Therefore, the sensors are only as secure as the physical security measures surrounding them.

For the above reasons, security must be baked in to sensors and controllers as deeply as possible. Actuators must be able to authenticate the source of incoming commands before carrying them out, and controllers must be able to identify and authenticate the source of sensor data before acting on it.

For sensors and actuators that are microcontroller-based, SecureRF’s IoT Embedded SDK is the ideal security solution. The IoT SDK provides a public key agreement protocol plus a digital signature algorithm to handle the authentication of either party (the IoT device or its associated controller) with the lowest impact to ROM/RAM space and energy consumption.

For base stations, gateways, and other controllers, SecureRF offers SDKs for Linux, Windows, and Android platforms. These SDKs offer security primitives that complement those contained in the IoT Embedded SDK. All SDKs come with code examples that can be installed on your target device and run out-of-the-box.

Click here or on the button below to request the IoT Embedded SDK.


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