The UK, Canada and Singapore are joining forces to improve the security of IoT devices.
In a joint statement, the governments of the respective countries highlighted the economic and social benefits of IoT devices. However, they also warned of the risks of insecure IoT devices not only to the security, privacy, and safety of consumers, but also to the broader economy through large-scale cyberattacks.
Many record cyberattacks have taken advantage of the often poor security practices of IoT device manufacturers. As malicious nations increasingly resort to cyberattacks to cause harm to rivals, using plausible deniability to avoid repercussions, it is more imperative than ever to improve cybersecurity measures.
Here is the full statement:
“The continued growth of network-connectable products (also known as the Internet of Things or ‘IoT’) offers great benefits to citizens and a revolution in connectivity. However, many of these products currently lack even basic cybersecurity provisions. The result is that consumer safety, privacy, and security are at risk, and the economy at large is vulnerable to large-scale cyberattacks that can be launched through insecure IoT.
The governments of Canada, Singapore and the United Kingdom are united in our belief that connected products offer tremendous economic and social benefits, and that appropriate cybersecurity requirements should be built into these products from the design stage, rather than placing this burden on consumers. Our approach supports growth and innovation, and enables citizens to benefit from the extraordinary opportunities offered by this connected revolution.
Protecting consumers around the world requires coordinated efforts by like-minded governments, academia and civil society. Our three governments are working together to promote and support the development of international standards and industry guidance, to foster innovation and foster approaches that incorporate internationally recognized security requirements and avoid fragmentation. Through this global alignment, we are able to reduce the duplication of similar tests and assessments and the challenge for the industry of having to apply to multiple schemes supported by identical or very similar requirements.
We support the emerging core security requirements for these products and encourage international recognition and alignment with them. We are united in our belief that international standards can facilitate sound security practices and encourage the adoption of international standards to mitigate these cyber risks. We commit to continuing to work closely together and will continue to promote global alignment on best practice and encourage recognition of aligned schemes to reduce unnecessary barriers to trade and industry.”
On the day of the launch of its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, Russia launched a cyberattack against the Viasat satellite operator to disrupt Ukrainian communications. Secondary effects of the attack affected wind turbines in Germany.
In April, members of the Five Eyes intelligence alliance, which includes the UK and Canada, issued a joint cybersecurity advisory warning of increased attacks on critical infrastructure from Russia. These attacks could target countries that have supported Ukraine, especially those that have legally provided conventional weapons to help the country defend itself from an invading force.
The UK and Canada are members of the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defense Center of Excellence (CCDCOE), which is open to like-minded countries that are not part of the broader military alliance. Amidst growing threats to global cybersecurity, CCDCOE’s membership is growing rapidly.
This week, Japan announced that it had joined the CCDCOE. In May, the center added South Korea, Canada and Luxembourg to its membership. In March, the CCDCOE voted to accept Ukraine as a partner.
Cyber security alliances, including the CCDCOE and the IoT security partnership announced this week between the UK, Canada and Singapore, will be crucial in addressing growing cyber threats now and in the future.
(Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash)
Related: US Warns Russian Cyber Attack Could Trigger NATO Response
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