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802.11ax means more IoT. Now, how do I secure it?
Like the teenager with no driving experience who takes the family SUV on the open highway, even the simplest devices that are connecting to corporate networks have the power to participate in an attack and cause serious damage. Courtesy of Moore’s Law, anything with an IP address must be now considered a potential threat. Ironically, 802.11ax introduces terrific new security features such as WPA3 and OWE. But, it also makes the WLAN even more IoT-friendly, given the support for dense concentrations of clients in environments such as smart buildings, where devices like lighting controls are as likely to be connected wirelessly as wired. Despite their computing power, “things” like sensors, controls, equipment, etc., rarely carry even minimum protection beyond a factory-installed (and easily guessed) user id and password that is rarely if ever changed. In addition, these devices do not log, so there is no signal or alert to indicate if they are compromised. To make matters worse, “things” often show up on networks without the knowledge of the IT or security team. Hence, we have the perfect security nightmare: hundreds or thousands of powerful components connected to the IT network, outside the purview of standard security visibility and controls.
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