The Week in Review: IoT

UK policy report; IoT ‘missiles’; Qualcomm saga.


The United Kingdom government issued a policy report, Secure by Design, calling on Internet of Things device manufacturers to eliminate default passwords, to provide greater transparency in vulnerability disclosure, and to secure credential storage. The report urges shifting cybersecurity responsibility to IoT device vendors, rather than end-users, and protecting the privacy rights of consumers.

The Internet of Things poses an “Internet of Trouble” threat to national security with its devices so easily susceptible to cyberattacks, Morgan Wright of the Center for Digital Government notes in this analysis. “The point is that poorly secured technology – a vast majority of it from overseas – is being cobbled together to form a massively destructive cyber weapon being aimed at the United States. IoT is taking slingshots and turning them into missiles,” he writes.

In case you spent spring break in Cabo San Lucas, here’s what you need to know in a quick summary. Broadcom won’t be acquiring Qualcomm after the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States recommended that the proposed transaction be blocked on national-security grounds, and President Trump issued an executive order to that effect. Broadcom officially gave up the unsolicited takeover bid for Qualcomm and said it plans to proceed with relocating its corporate headquarters from Singapore to the States. Meanwhile, Qualcomm still must deal with completing its acquisition of NXP Semiconductors and resolving its legal disputes with Apple and the Federal Trade Commission over its business practices. And late in this week, the Financial Times reported that Qualcomm director and former executive chairman Paul Jacobs is seeking investors for a buyout of Qualcomm and has informed the board of his plans. The SoftBank Group is reportedly among those potential investors.

Market Research
Gartner forecasts that more than 65% of enterprises will adopt IoT products by 2020, with smart city and IIoT applications leading the field. This blog post looks at the combination of IoT with machine learning technology. The pairing can be useful in anomaly monitoring, predictive maintenance, and vehicle telemetry.

Juniper Research predicts worldwide spending on cybersecurity solutions will reach $134 billion by 2022, with small businesses accounting for most of those expenditures. The market research firm has a new report, Cybersecurity Mitigation Strategies, available here.

Israel’s Solebit Labs received $11 million in Series A funding led by ClearSky Cyber Security. MassMutual Ventures and Glilot Capital Partners also participated in the round. Solebit markets the SoleGATE cyberprotection software platform and has an office in San Francisco.

Luminate Security came out of stealth mode this week, announcing $14 million in combined seed and Series A funding by U.S. Venture Partners and Aleph Venture Capital. The startup is another one bridging Israel and the United States, with offices in Tel Aviv and Palo Alto. Luminate will use the money to expand its operations in the U.S. and to widen its customer base, which includes companies in consumer, financial, and technology services.

Samsung Electronics is bringing together two of its acquisitions, having Samsung SmartThings’ R&D team and HARMAN Connected Services collaborate on an IoT platform, with the HARMAN International division supporting the SmartThings applications and device development.

Silicon Labs introduced two Power over Ethernet Powered Device lines for IoT applications. The chips support the IEEE 802.3 standard.

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