U.S. GAO – Internet of Things: Enhanced Assessments and Guidance Are Needed to Address Security Risks in DOD | US GAO

What GAO Found

The Internet of Things (IoT) is the set of Internet-capable devices, such as wearable fitness devices and smartphones, that interact with the physical environment and typically contain elements for sensing, communicating, processing, and actuating. Even as the IoT creates many benefits, it is important to acknowledge its emerging security implications. The Department of Defense (DOD) has identified numerous security risks with IoT devices and conducted some assessments that examined such security risks, such as infrastructure-related and intelligence assessments. Risks with IoT devices can generally be divided into risks with the devices themselves and risks with how they are used. For example, risks with the devices include limited encryption and a limited ability to patch or upgrade devices. Risks with how they are used—operational risks—include insider threats and unauthorized communication of information to third parties. DOD has developed IoT threat scenarios involving intelligence collection and the endangerment of senior DOD leadership—scenarios that incorporate IoT security risks (see figure). Although DOD has begun to examine security risks of IoT devices through its infrastructure-related and intelligence assessments, the department has not conducted required assessments related to the security of its operations.”

Source: U.S. GAO – Internet of Things: Enhanced Assessments and Guidance Are Needed to Address Security Risks in DOD | U.S. GAO

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