The growth of network-connected devices, systems and services comprising the Internet of Things (IoT) provides efficiencies and personalization of experience that is attractive to both manufacturers and consumers. Network connected devices, systems, and services are also increasingly integrated with and relied upon by our Nation’s critical infrastructure, leading to a national dependency.
The characteristics of the IoT ecosystem also result in multiple opportunities for malicious actors to manipulate the flow of information to and from network connected devices. Important processes that once were performed manually, and therefore enjoyed a measure of immunity against malicious cyber activity, are growing more vulnerable. Recent large scale distributed denial of service attacks foreshadow increasing in the US and elsewhere.
The Department of Homeland Security draws on its deep expertise in cybersecurity, critical infrastructure protection, and preparedness efforts to address the challenge in securing the IoT. As a Sector Specific Agency, DHS places a strong emphasis on malicious cyber activities that threaten infrastructure and public safety. The IoT links the cybersecurity, critical infrastructure, and preparedness mission areas and creates an environment where physical and cyber elements are inextricably connected.