Ensuring end-to-end security ranks as the number-one priority for M2M projects, according to a recent survey of M2M solution providers in North America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific conducted by Beecham Research.
In a survey carried out for US software giant Oracle, some 60% of respondents said that “ensuring end-to-end security” was one of their top three priorities for delivering M2M projects today.
“Integration with IT” came second on the list, ticked by 50% of respondents, followed by “coordinating partners in the value chain”, chosen by 45%.
The importance respondents attached to security is hardly surprising given the growing reports of data loss and corruption, access intrusion and distributed denials of service, according to Beecham.
“In 2012, over five times as many vulnerabilities were reported [in the area of industrial control systems] compared to the previous five years,” said the market-research company in a paper. “These doubled again in 2012.”
One problem identified by Beecham is that different vertical markets have different security needs.
In business critical applications, for instance, data security and the physical integrity of remote devices is of chief importance, while in smart metering and telehealth the security of personal information is the major concern.
Beecham says that ensuring end-to-end security is likely to involve a multitude of vendors, whose main challenge will be to “dynamically [link] together to form an end-to-end chain”.
“If the reaction to the new security threats is simplistically to add even stronger protection, then the costs of that additional security will result in M2M solutions that are not economically viable,” said Beecham.
A further challenge is complying with regulation in the area of data protection, especially in Europe, where this issue has attracted particular attention from authorities.
“Complete privacy has proved to be unattainable, hence choices must be made to prioritize needs so as to make the solution affordable and realistic,” said Beecham.