We recently wrote an article on 5G and touched on some of the major security concerns that come with 5G technology. Many of these security concerns revolve around the increases in IoT devices expected to utilize the network. Anytime a new device sits on a network there is risk and vulnerability to attacks. IoT is such a concern because wireless devices are being developed and released to the public so quickly. From A/V to fitness equipment to security cameras to appliances, wireless IoT is popping up everywhere and there is simply no way to verify the vulnerability of each of these devices. The risk with 5G is that it is open, devices are visible and there is a major concern about device vulnerability to internet threats.
Because the cellular environment is “uncontrolled”, neither 4G or 5G are appropriate for multifamily IoT. In addition, most building’s today will not even be able to rely on 5G due the lack of cellular coverage inside, making Smart Building impossible. This leaves Wi-Fi as the only real-world option for multifamily IoT and Wi-Fi can present huge security problems also, which is why a Wireless Security Plan is so important.
Simply put: if your property is going to utilize IoT, for internal staff, resident amenities, security or Smart Building, you absolutely need to have a Wireless Security Plan. At this stage of the IoT game, to utilize wireless networking at your property that does not have adequate security features is akin to having a laptop with absolutely no internet security, going to the local coffee shop and doing some banking. It’s dangerous for you as a building owner and it’s dangerous for residents. When we talk about security, we are not talking about passwords or encryption (which are pretty much useless when it comes to networking at this level).
What are “Adequate Security Features”?
At Spot On, our internal standard is called “UserSafe®”. I will speak to what we do at Spot On, but if you utilize another Wi-Fi company, it is important that you are educated on what that vendor should be providing for you. UserSafe® uses client isolation technology to make every device on the network and/or interaction with the Internet, invisible. We manage ALL aspects of a network, so if there are instances where devices need to speak with each other (for example staff iPads or a laptop with a printer), we isolate that group of devices and guard them as individual clients. We provide these levels of sophistication at both the property AND resident level. While this level of networking may sound simple, it is extremely complex and it is essential that it be done correctly.
Expert predictions are that hacking, spoofing, identity theft and internet attacks are going to increase exponentially with devices being utilized for IoT. Every device that is not isolated by UserSafe® or similar technology is vulnerable. That spreads like a spider web to any device connected to the original device.
The last point we want to make, and this is an interesting prediction is that the proliferation of IoT, coupled with the security fears that come along with 5G and typical Wi-Fi, are going to make multifamily residential living appeal to a whole new genre of people. Suddenly, an IoT and amenity-rich multifamily space with a secure wireless backbone become super attractive to a techie individual who might otherwise choose a single-family residence or a multifamily property without a managed backbone. Internet management is becoming too complex for the individual to tackle. In addition “Smart Homes”, where virtually everything is wireless are right around the corner. To be a able to move to a space where they networking of exactly what you want from a Smart Home perspective is secure and taken care of is a huge bonus. It is to the building owner’s advantage to increase their property’s valuation by utilizing a UserSafe® or similar backbone to manage their IoT, voice and any resident application.
For assistance developing your Wireless Security Plan and IoT Backbone: email@example.com or call 877-768-6687