NXP and Alibaba Cloud Announce Strategic Partnership for Edge Computing and IoT Security

NXP and Alibaba Cloud Announce Strategic Partnership for Edge Computing and IoT Security

NXP and Alibaba Cloud Announce Strategic Partnership for Edge Computing and IoT Security

NXP Semiconductors today announced a strategic partnership with Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing and business unit of Alibaba Group.

The two companies are working together to enable development of secure smart devices for edge computing applications and have plans to further develop solutions for the Internet of Things (IoT).

As part of the partnership, AliOS Things, the Alibaba IoT operating system has been integrated onto NXP applications processors, microcontroller chips, and Layerscape multicore processors. Both NXP’s i.MX and Layerscape processors are currently the only embedded systems on the market using the Alibaba Cloud TEE OS platform. The new solution benefits various markets including automotive, smart retail and smart home. And it is currently being applied in applications such as automotive entertainment and infotainment systems, QR code payment scanning applications and smart home speakers.

Li Zheng, NXP global senior vice president and President of Greater China, said:

“As the leader of IoT innovation in China, Alibaba Cloud has launched a range of IoT basic and content services to support the demands of cloud computing, big data, AI [artificial intelligence], cloud integration and security. Alibaba Cloud IoT kit has launched more than 200 categories, with a total of more than 10 million sets of sales.”

“Our partnership with Alibaba Cloud will promote the continuous and steady expansion of NXP’s technological advantages for edge computing and IoT security, and will support the long-term and secure development of China’s IoT ecosystem.”

“We share the same vision as NXP on providing advanced and secure IoT solutions for an ‘everything connected’ world,” said Ku Wei, General Manager of IoT of Alibaba Cloud. “Based on the integration of AliOS Things with NXP’s applications processors and microcontroller chips, our comprehensive solution will better serve the development of China’s local commercial and manufacturing industries.”

With the deep partnership between NXP and Alibaba Cloud Link in the field of IoT security, NXP has become a council member of the ICA IoT Connectivity Alliance. In the future. The two companies plan to jointly develop solutions to support application development in different fields including smart manufacturing and smart city.

The ‘Annual Report of China IoT Development 2015-2016’ predicts that the amount of equipment connected to IoT globally will reach 20-50 billion by 2020, with 80 percent of that equipment in China. NXP’s robust product portfolio covers offering from the edge node to gateway and comprehensive cloud IoT solutions. NXP’s products are widely used in smart homes, smart cities, smart transportation, and secure connectivity.

In China, NXP combines outstanding enterprises in upstream and downstream industries, working together with industry leaders for the safe, connected, sustainable development and motivation for innovation of IoT.

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Worldwide IoT spending will reach $772 billion in 2018

Worldwide IoT spending will reach $ 772 billion in 2018

Worldwide IoT spending will reach $ 772 billion in 2018

Worldwide spending on the Internet of Things (IoT) is forecast to reach $ 772.5 billion in 2018, an increase of 14.6% over the $ 674 billion that will be spent in 2017.

A new update to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Semiannual Internet of Things Spending Guide forecasts worldwide IoT spending to sustain a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.4% through the 2017-2021 forecast period surpassing the $ 1 trillion mark in 2020 and reaching $ 1.1 trillion in 2021.

IoT hardware will be the largest technology category in 2018 with $ 239 billion going largely toward modules and sensors along with some spending on infrastructure and security. IoT services will be the second largest technology category, followed by software and connectivity. Software spending will be led by application software along with analytics software, IoT platforms, and security software. Software will also be the fastest growing technology segment with a five-year CAGR of 16.1%. Services spending will also grow at a faster rate than overall spending with a CAGR of 15.1% and will nearly equal hardware spending by the end of the forecast.

Carrie MacGillivray, vice president, Internet of Things and Mobility at IDC, said:

“By 2021, more than 55% of spending on IoT projects will be for software and services. This is directly in line with results from IDC’s 2017 Global IoT Decision Maker Survey where organizations indicate that software and services are the key areas of focused investment for their IoT projects.”

“Software creates the foundation upon which IoT applications and use cases can be realized. However, it is the services that help bring all the technology elements together to create a comprehensive solution that will benefit organizations and help them achieve a quicker time to value.”

The industries that are expected to spend the most on IoT solutions in 2018 are manufacturing ($ 189 billion), transportation ($ 85 billion), and utilities ($ 73 billion). IoT spending among manufacturers will be largely focused on solutions that support manufacturing operations and production asset management. In transportation, two thirds of IoT spending will go toward freight monitoring, followed by fleet management. IoT spending in the utilities industry will be dominated by smart grids for electricity, gas, and water. Cross-Industry IoT spending, which represent use cases common to all industries, such as connected vehicles and smart buildings, will be nearly $ 92 billion in 2018 and rank among the top areas of spending throughout the five-year forecast.

Consumer IoT spending will reach $ 62 billion in 2018, making it the fourth largest industry segment. The leading consumer use cases will be related to the smart home, including home automation, security, and smart appliances,” said Marcus Torchia, research director, Customer Insights & Analysis. “Smart appliances will experience strong spending growth over the five-year forecast period and will help to make consumer the fastest growing industry segment with an overall CAGR of 21.0%.”

Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) (APeJ) will be the geographic region with the most IoT spending in 2018 – $ 312 billion – followed by North America (the United States and Canada) at $ 203 billion and Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) at $ 171 billion. China will be the country with the largest IoT spending total in 2018 ($ 209 billion), driven by investments from manufacturing, utilities, and government. IoT spending in the United States will total $ 194 billion in 2018, led by manufacturing, transportation, and the consumer segment. Japan ($ 68 billion) and Korea ($ 29 billion) will be the third and fourth largest countries in 2018, with IoT spending largely driven by the manufacturing industry. Latin America will deliver the fastest overall growth in IoT spending with a five-year CAGR of 28.3%.

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KORE Launches KORE Connect in Europe

KORE Launches KORE Connect in Europe

KORE Launches KORE Connect in Europe

Global IoT Solutions Provider Launches KORE Power Solutions in Europe to Expand Business Solutions that Eliminate Outages and Provide Secure Business Continuity.

Today, KORE announced the availability of KORE Connect in Europe. KORE Connect provides a bundled, turnkey solution comprised of secure, managed 4G LTE cellular wireless connectivity, cellular-enabled routers and/or gateways, KORE’s best-in-class connectivity management platform, and 24/7 customer support.

In today’s demanding marketplace, businesses need continuous high-speed network connectivity to keep their operations running and avoid costly Internet outages that negatively impact revenue while eroding customer satisfaction. Cellular wireless technology is a reliable, secure and cost-effective solution for enabling mission-critical applications across multiple industries.

KORE Connect is the flagship product in the KORE Power Solutions suite, a set of offerings that simplify the complex and empower businesses to avoid the common pitfalls associated with IoT implementations. KORE’s bundled offerings combine a strong foundation of reliable, secure, and scalable IoT connectivity with equipment, applications, and professional services to provide businesses with end-to-end, fully-managed IoT solutions.

KORE Connect provides the plug-and-play simplicity businesses demand, and the rapid speed-to-market capability required in the competitive European IoT industry. KORE Connect supports seamless, continuous operations while enhancing customer support and service delivery for both primary and back-up networking needs:

  • Primary connectivity: Delivers a secure wireless alternative for small offices and highly transient organizations; use case examples include food trucks, kiosks, and pop-up stores
  • Back-up networking: Provides immediate failover networking options when the primary connection is disrupted; ideal for businesses such as financial institutions, retail stores and healthcare clinics

“The launch of KORE Connect in Europe further bolsters our wide array of global, purpose-built IoT offerings,” said Elizabeth Elkins, Executive Vice President of Product at KORE.

“With KORE Connect, European businesses can now take advantage of new revenue opportunities, eliminate business continuity risks caused by outages and increase revenue gain, productivity and customer satisfaction.”

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The Internet of Insecure Things

The Internet of Insecure Things

The Internet of Insecure Things

An article by León Markovitz, Marketing Manager at Netonomy (Twitter @getnetonomy).

From home appliances to health applications and security solutions, everything we use at home – and outside of it, is getting connected to the Internet, becoming the Internet of Things (IoT). Think about how many connected devices you have at home: tablets, laptops, e-readers, fitness devices, smart TVs – how about your thermostat, light bulbs, refrigerator and security system? Our home has effectively become a connected home, with an average of 12 things connecting to our home Wi-Fi network, transmitting data and delivering added value. But as connected home appliances continue to grow, so too will the cybersecurity risks.

Consumers have been fast to adopt IoT devices on the promise that they can improve our lifestyles. These things track and optimize our energy consumption, facilitate our daily tasks, improve our health and wellness, keep us secure and empower us with the freedom and data to do other things better. But from a security point of view, this unregulated, insecure and fragmented market represents a clear and present danger to individuals and society as a whole, from the cyber to the physical realm.

Chart: IoT units by category 2016-2020To protect connected homes, a multi-faceted approach is recommended, combining a firewall blocking mechanism with machine learning and artificial intelligence to detect network anomalies. Millions of IoT devices are already compromised and we recommend communication service providers (CSPs) to initiate deployment of cybersecurity solutions today in parallel to their own R&D plans. By providing cybersecurity solutions through partnerships, they can begin to protect their vulnerable clients today and establish a market leadership position.

Cyber-threats

The declining costs to manufacture chips that can store and transmit data through a network connection have enabled thousands of organizations and startups to bring IoT products to market. But the current lack of standards and security certifications, coupled with fierce market competition to deliver affordable IoT products, have made cybersecurity an expense that manufacturers prefer others to deal with.

The lack of experience and incentives in the IoT supply chain to provide secure devices has created a tremendously vulnerable IoT landscape. In fact, according to recent findings by Symantec, IoT devices can become compromised within two minutes of connecting to the Internet1. Legislation has been too slow to deal with the current threat, and although there are public initiatives to drive cyber awareness among consumers, we do not expect any tangible changes soon.

examples of hacked IoT devices

There are many attack vectors and vulnerabilities to worry about in the Connected Home. From poor design decisions and hard-coded passwords to coding flaws, everything with an IP address is a potential backdoor to cyber crimes. Traditional cybersecurity companies reacted slowly and failed to provide defense solutions to the expanding universe of IoT devices. However, novel approaches with Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning – such as analyzing and understanding network behaviors to detect anomalies, are now available to defend against these new threats.

IoT vulnerabilities' attack surface

With all its challenges and opportunities, consumer IoT is destined to disrupt long-established industries, making it a space one cannot afford to ignore. One such long-established industry is precisely the one powering the revolution: the CSPs providing the broadband. By and large, telecommunication companies have failed to monetize the data running through their home gateways, missing out in big opportunities. We believe that the connected home, especially cybersecurity, is a low-hanging fruit that communication service providers can and should pick before it’s too late.

Home security and safety-related appliances are top revenue drivers in the connected home landscape, and telecom companies are well positioned to enter this market and rebrand themselves as innovative and secure companies interested in the well-being and privacy of their customers. By leveraging their existing assets, such as the home router, telecoms can provide holistic solutions that include cybersecurity, data management and customer support – giving them a unique advantage over their competitors. Consumers would much rather trust their CSPs to continue managing their data than giving it away to foreign or unknown companies. It is time for Internet Service Providers to reclaim their value as a Service Provider, else they risk missing out in this revolution as broadband continues to become commoditized.

Personal Risks

Hacking the connected homeStories of hacked IoT devices abound, a quick search online will lead you to scary stories, from spying Barbie dolls2, to TV sets monitoring you3 and creeps accessing baby cameras4. Most ironic and worrying of all are the security threats inherent in best-selling security systems, which can allow hackers to control the whole system, due to lack of encryption and sufficient cybersecurity standards5.

The cyber and physical risks intensify the more devices we connect: The volume of granular data that all these connected things generate when combined can provide a very detailed profile of the user, which can be used for identity theft and blackmail.

Once an unprotected IoT device gets hacked, a skilled hacker can proceed to infect other devices in the network via “lateral movement”. By jumping from one device to another, a hacker can gain complete control of a connected home. Because this threat comes from within the network, it is important to have a security solution that provides network visibility, creates device profiles and detects anomalies through machine learning and artificial intelligence.

There have been enough stories in the news for the average consumer to be aware of cyber threats, they know security is important and that they don’t have it, but they lack the resources to properly protect themselves. IoT manufacturers should be held accountable to prioritize security, but until that happens, the responsibility and opportunity falls on CSPs to protect the consumers.

Structural Risks

What makes the IoT ecosystem a potentially deadly cyber threat is the combined computing and networking power of thousands of devices which, when operated together as a botnet, can execute massive Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks and shut down large swaths of the Internet through a fire hose of junk traffic. The IoT ecosystem represents a totally different level of complexity and scale in terms of security and privacy.

type of infected devicesIn October 2016, we got a taste of this structural risk when the infamous Mirai botnet attacked the DNS company Dyn with the biggest DDoS attack ever reported: more than 1 terabit per second (Tbps) flooded the service, temporarily blocking access to Netflix, Twitter, Amazon, PayPal, SoundCloud, New York Times and others. The Mirai botnet used enslaved IoT devices -nearly 150,000 hacked cameras, routers and smart appliances, to inadvertently do its criminal bidding, and most of the infected devices remain out there, with their users oblivious to the fact.

The way Mirai malware spreads and attacks is well known: it scans the web for open Telnet and SSH ports, browsing for vulnerable devices using factory default or hard-coded usernames and passwords, then uses an encrypted tunnel to communicate between the devices and command and control (C&C) servers that send instructions to them. Since Mirai uses encrypted traffic, it prevents security researchers from monitoring the command and data traffic.

The source code for Mirai was posted soon after on the Hackforums site6, enabling other criminals to create their own strains of the malware. It is not necessary to have an “army” of thousands of infected devices to cause harm. Mini-DDoS botnets, with hundreds of compromised nodes, are sufficient to cause temporary structural damage and reduce the chances of getting caught -expect more of these attacks in the future.

geography of infected devices

Capturing vulnerable devices to turn them into botnets has become a cyber crime gold rush, with an estimated 4000 vulnerable IoT devices becoming active each day7, and criminals selling and renting botnets in the dark net at competitive prices to cause harm. Although simple to understand, this sort of malware is hard to detect because it does not generally affect device performance, so the average user cannot know if their device is part of a botnet – and even if they did, it’s often difficult to interact with IoT devices without a user interface.

Stakeholders should take proactive steps that can prevent future incidents by addressing the lack of security-by-design in the IoT landscape. The Mirai malware was a warning shot, and organizations must be prepared for larger and potentially more devastating attacks. Because of market failures at play, regulation seems like the only way forward to incentivize device manufacturers to implement security in their design, but doing so could stifle innovation and prove disastrous to the ecosystem. It is because of this delicate balance that we believe service providers are perfectly positioned to seize this problem as an opportunity to become market leaders in the emerging field of IoT cybersecurity.

Looking Forward

The frequency of cyber threats is increasing as the IoT landscape continues to expand. Gartner predicts that by 2020, addressing compromises in IoT security will have increased security costs to 20% of annual security budgets, from less than one percent in 20158. The threats to consumers and society are numerous, but joint cybersecurity and cyber-hygiene efforts by manufacturers, legislators, service providers and end users, will mitigate the inherent risks discussed in this paper.

Until that happens, service providers are uniquely positioned and encouraged to begin offering cybersecurity services to their consumers through their home gateways: the main door of the home network. Communication Service Providers that provide home network security and management solutions today can become the preferred brand for Smart Home solutions and appliances, leading IoT market adoption while preventing the cyber risks associated with it.

Netonomy has developed a solution that is available today for service providers interested in providing a layer of security to their consumers and become a trusted market leader in the emerging IoT landscape. Because it is cloud-based, this solution can be instantly deployed across thousands of routers at a low cost and bring immediate peace of mind to consumers.

Netonomy’s Solution:
Netonomy provides a simple, reliable and secure network for the connected home. Through a minimal-footprint agent installed on the home router, we provide a holistic solution to manage the connected home network and protect it from internal and external security threats. Our unique technology can be deployed on virtually all the existing home gateways quickly and at a minimal cost, providing ISPs and router manufacturers with better visibility into home networks and a premium service that can be sold to customers to make their connected future simple, reliable and secure.
1 “2017 Internet Security Threat Report.” Symantec, 2017, https://resource.elq.symantec.com/LP=3980?cid=70138000001BjppAAC&mc=202671&ot=wp&tt=sw&inid=symc_threat-report_regular_to_leadgen_form_LP-3980_ISTR22-report-main
2 Gibbs, Samuel. “Hackers can hijack Wi-Fi Hello Barbie to spy on your children.” The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, 26 Nov. 2015, www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/nov/26/hackers-can-hijack-wi-fi-hello-barbie-to-spy-on-your-children
3 Goldman, David. “Your Samsung TV is eavesdropping on your private conversations.” CNNMoney, Cable News Network, 10 Feb. 2015, money.cnn.com/2015/02/09/technology/security/samsung-smart-tv-privacy/
4 Flannigan on August 18, Jenna. “Parental Warning: Baby Monitors Can Be Hacked.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 18 Aug. 2016, www.healthline.com/health-news/baby-monitors-can-be-hacked
5 Storm, Darlene. “Of 10 IoT-Connected home security systems tested, 100% are full of security FAIL.” Computerworld, Computerworld, 11 Feb. 2015, www.computerworld.com/article/2881942/cybercrime-hacking/of-10-iot-connected-home-security-systems-tested-100-are-full-of-security-fail.html
6 Goodin – Oct 2, 2016 10:39 pm UTC, Dan. “Brace yourselves—source code powering potent IoT DDoSes just went public.” Ars Technica, 2 Oct. 2016, arstechnica.com/information-technology/2016/10/brace-yourselves-source-code-powering-potent-iot-ddoses-just-went-public/
7 Scott, James, and Drew Spaniel. “Rise of the Machines: The DYN Attack Was Just A Practice Run.” Institute for Critical Infrastructure Technology, Dec. 2016, icitech.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/ICIT-Brief-Rise-of-the-Machines.pdf
8 “Gartner Says Worldwide IoT Security Spending to Reach $ 348 Million in 2016.” Gartner, 25 Apr. 2016, www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/3291817

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Top 5 predictions for the IIoT in 2018

Top 5 predictions for the IIoT in 2018

Top 5 predictions for the IIoT in 2018
Adoption of the IoT and IIoT into 2018 shows no signs of slowing down. If anything, adoption and implementations will only increase.

Sastry Malladi, CTO of FogHorn Systems, has shared his top five predictions for the IIoT in 2018:

1. Momentum for edge analytics and edge intelligence in the IIoT will accelerate in 2018.

Almost every notable hardware vendor has a ruggedized line of products promoting edge processing. This indicates that the market is prime for Industrial IoT (IIoT) adoption. With technology giants announcing software stacks for the edge, there is little doubt that this momentum will only accelerate during 2018. Furthermore, traditional industries, like manufacturing, that have been struggling to showcase differentiated products, will now embrace edge analytics to drive new revenue streams and/or significant yield improvements for their customers.

Additionally, any industry with assets being digitized and making the leap toward connecting or instrumenting brownfield environments is well positioned to leverage the value of edge intelligence. Usually, the goal of these initiatives is to have deep business impact. This can be delivered by tapping into previously unknown or unrealized efficiencies and optimizations. Often these surprising insights are uncovered only through analytics and machine learning. Industries with often limited access to bandwidth, such as oil and gas, mining, fleet and other verticals, truly benefit from edge intelligence. What’s more, those that apply edge intelligence are able to benefit from real-time decisions, as well as insights from voluminous streaming sensor data.

Due to the current pain points in the IIoT space and the edge technology availability to address them, we expect to see increased interest in edge analytics/ML from oil and gas, energy, utilities, transportation and other sectors interested in revamping their IIoT value.

2. Business cases and ROI are critical for IIoT pilots and adoption in 2018

The year 2017 was about exploring IIoT and led to the explosion of proof of concepts and pilot implementations. While this trend will continue into 2018, we expect increased awareness about the business value edge technologies bring to the table. Companies that have been burned by the “Big Data Hype” – where data was collected but little was leveraged – will assess IIoT engagements and deployments for definitive ROI. As edge technologies pick up speed in proving business value, the adoption rate will exponentially rise to meet the demands of ever-increasing IoT applications.

3. IIoT standards will be driven by customer successes and company partnerships

IIoT is just now getting attention from the major technology players. If anything, 2018 will see more new products coming to market, and there will be more to choose from in terms of standards. The next year or two will see stronger alliances, unlikely partnerships and increased merger and acquisition activity as the large technology companies seek innovation inside and outside their organizations. As for standards, they will be driven by success of customers and patterns of scalable IIoT solutions.

4. IT and OT teams will collaborate for successful IIoT deployments

IIoT deployments will start forcing closer engagement between IT and operations technology (OT) teams. Line of business leaders will get more serious around investing in digitization, and IT will become the cornerstone required for the success of these initiatives. What was considered a wide gap between the two sectors – IT and OT – will bridge thanks to the recognized collaboration needed to successfully deploy IIoT solutions and initiatives.

And will OT design affect IIoT apps? Yes, definitely. Recent research and field studies suggest that analytics tools are being made more accessible to end users, i.e. domain experts and plant operators. This means that advanced technology is now being made available to field workers, so operational decisions can be driven in real-time at the industrial location.

5. Edge computing will reduce security vulnerabilities for IIoT assets.

While industries do recognize the impact of an IIoT security breach there is surprisingly little implementation of specific solutions. This stems from two emerging trends:
a) Traditional IT security vendors are still repositioning their existing products to address IIoT security concerns.
b) A number of new entrants are developing targeted security solutions that are specific to a layer in the stack, or a particular vertical.

This creates the expectation that, if and when an event occurs, these two classes of security solutions are sufficient enough. Often IoT deployments are considered greenfield and emerging, so these security breaches still seem very futuristic, even though they are happening now. Consequently, there is little acceleration to deploy security solutions, and most leaders seem to employ a wait-and-watch approach. The good news is major security threats, like WannaCry, Petya/Goldeneye and BadRabbit, do resurface IIoT security concerns during the regular news cycle. However, until security solutions are more targeted, and evoke trust, they may not help move the needle.

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