24th October 2016
The Internet of Things: Tech revolution or evolution?
Has the IoT tech revolution arrived?
Over two years ago, it was reported that with the dawn of the Internet of Things (IoT) a technical revolution was well on the way. But what is The Internet Things and why is it considered so revolutionary? The Guardian describes it here:
“The Internet of Things (also known as M2M or machine to machine) refers to an expanding network of interconnected internet-enabled devices. Driven by miniaturisation, the affordability of components such as cheap Bluetooth sensors, and the growing ubiquity of technologies such as Wi-Fi, it is now possible to connect devices in a way that would never have previously been thought possible”.
In 2016, we have seen technology get smarter and more interconnected but, like Luke Dormehl observed of the Internet Things in 2014, this phenomenon is evolutionary as much as it is revolutionary. It still has a long way to go before total transformation can be touted from the roof tops and, like with the foundations of IT security, nailing the basics is paramount.
Just look at how a simple Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack brought much of the internet, in Europe and the US, to its knees. October 2016’s major cyber-attack which targeted the servers of Dyn – a company that controls much of the internet’s Domain Name System (DNS) infrastructure – was thought to be the largest on record.
In this DDoS attack, a network was infected with the Mirai botnet – malware that blasts a server with traffic until it fails. While most botnets are made up of computers, this special botnet is mostly constructed of IoT devices such as DVR players. This goes some way to explaining how this massive cyber security breach reached major websites such as Twitter, the Guardian and Netflix too. We are not sure this is the kind of tech revolution that the IoT pioneers and their supporters had in mind.
Of course, with any good revolution comes power struggles. While the French had a few gripes with most of Europe in the 1700s, Google’s ideas for expansion into IoT have raised a fair few eyebrows. The Switch2IT team, however, has had a niggling feeling about a certain operating systems giant since they launched Office 365 and here comes that euro theme again…
This time, instead of Marianne, the red capped icon of French liberty, we give you… Microsoft, the latest company to play the Brexit blame card. Since identifying Microsoft’s proposed price increases last year we hoped mass adoption of the cloud would bring cheaper computing to SMEs. Alas, instead the pound’s weakened value against the euro has led to another increase of Microsoft’s cloud computing services – by almost 25%!
Where does this leave SMEs who have switched to Office 365? Well, they can vote with their feet but this is not an IT solution to their cloud computing problem. Perhaps there is an opportunity for a game-changing piece of British innovation to replace exchange email. Perhaps the barrier to entry is too high, owing to a distinct lack of competition.
Tech revolution, what tech revolution? It seems the only ones having a riot (and at our expense) are the tech giants who are lining their pockets with platinum.
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Who does data protection law protect and what are the parameters? The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) recently published a blog that caused a few eyebrows to rise among the Switch2IT team. Steve Eckersley ICO Head of Enforcement, who aims to “take purposeful risk-based regulatory action where obligations are ignored, exam...Read More >
18th July 2017
What's the future for technology post-Brexit?
We realise there are an influx of “what-now-post-Brexit” articles circulating but there is no getting away from the fact that the decision of that marginal majority to pack their bags and move out of the EU will have (and is already having) a significant impact on UK businesses, especially with regard to data protection. What the Switc...Read More >