Smart cities will use 1.1 billion connected things this year, rising to 9.7 billion by 2020, Gartner predicted earlier this year.
But with a growing number of devices being connected up as part of the Internet of Things (IoT), concerns have been raised about how to make sure the IoT is secure.
In an effort to respond to the cybersecurity challenges presented by the IoT and to promote security excellence in IoT systems, a new non-profit organisation called the Internet of Things Security Foundation (IoTSF) has been established.
Created by more than 30 technology companies, including Vodafone, BT and Intel, the IoTSF is not aiming to become a standards body. Instead, it intends to collaborate with existing standards and other bodies, taking a system-wide perspective on IoT security best practice.
IoTSF director John Moor from industry group NMI, which represents the UK electronic systems industry and technology sector, described the opportunity for the Internet of Things as staggering.
There are a great many possibilities for businesses in all sectors including manufacturing, transport, health, home, consumer and public services, he said. However, there are ever-real security challenges that accompany those opportunities. It is vital to the adoption of existing and new systems that security is addressed from the start, that it is fit for purpose and it can be managed over the lifecycle of the system.
Our intention is simple — drive excellence in IoT security. By creating a dedicated focus on security, IoTSF aims to be the home for providers, adopters and beneficiaries of IoT products and services.