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June 5, 2014

Why businesses are failing to prepare for the Internet of Things

One in four does not know how to handle secure connectivity for IoT devices.

By Amy-Jo Crowley

Businesses are failing to prepare for the Internet of Things (IoT) even though they believe IoT will create security and privacy issues.

They don’t know how to handle the connectivity for the latest IoT devices, with some using relatively slower connections such as cable, DSL and ISDN.

Of the 440 IT professionals polled, 59% said they hadn’t taken steps to prepare for the impact it could have in their workplace, even though 71% believe IoT will affect their business as well as consumers.

When asked how they would plan to handle the connectivity of IoT devices, 26% admitted they didn’t know, 43% said they would assign a separate network, 23% said they will put them on the corporate network and 8% said they wouldn’t allow such devices.

The research found 40% are using relatively slower cable or DSL, while 37% said they are using T1, T3 and ISDN connections.

Kathryn Pribish, Voice of IT programme manager at Spiceworks, said: "The data technology trends we’ve seen emerge over the past few years, like BYOD, coupled with the IoT will have a dramatic impact on how IT professionals do their jobs.

"IT professionals understand the inevitability of the IoT but the reality is, though the impact will be gradual, resource-strained IT departments and others who haven’t jumped on the IoT bandwagon will be playing catch-up if they don’t adequately prepare."

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The research also found 98% agree their company’s demand for bandwidth will increase over the next five years, with 80% citing more data usage as the top driver, 68% increased content and 59% more users.

Another 68% of those preparing for the IoT are investing in hardware infrastructure, 63% are purchasing security solutions, and 55% are expanding bandwidth to connect things.

The study was conducted by Spiceworks and included respondents from manufacturing, healthcare, education, government and finance in the North America and EMEA regions.

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