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The Intersection of IoT and Smart Business

How can companies utilize Internet of Things solutions while avoiding the pitfalls associated with such technologies?
By Linda Rhodes and Charles King III

Assessing Risk
The first step toward understanding the risk associated with an IoT system is determining what types of data are being collected and the legal obligations associated with that information. For instance, a small business that uses IoT to collect inventory data may not have any legal obligations with respect to that data. But, a company that manufactures IoT home devices probably collects vast amounts of personal data (names and protected health information, for instance), and is thus subject to various privacy laws. These privacy laws, GDPR in particular, can be burdensome and, if violated, may trigger large fines.

Additionally, companies should be aware of any contractual obligations that may classify data as "confidential information"—or otherwise restrict use of IoT data. By understanding each data type, and the obligations associated with that data, companies can create digital-management strategies that keep them in compliance with those contractual obligations.

Every digital-management strategy should consider IoT security concerns. IoT devices are notorious for security vulnerabilities—in 2017, nearly half of all companies using an IoT network had been the victim of a security breach. Furthermore, it is estimated that through 2022, half of all IoT security budgets will go toward fault remediation.

Moreover, not all data is "good" data. Like most instruments, IoT sensors may not always provide accurate readings due to improper calibration or a device malfunction. Using "bad" data can lead to faulty conclusions and negative consequences. This is especially true in the context of AI.

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