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UK Government Plans To Ban Weak Default Passwords on IoT Devices

Written by  Jan 27, 2020

The move appears to be motivated by research that suggests there will be a staggering 75 billion internet-connected devices across the world by 2025.

They present an incredibly large attack surface for cyber criminals to target if the security of devices such as smart televisions, cameras, and smart home assistants, isn’t up to scratch.


Internet of Things: What You Need to Know About IoT, Big Data, Predictive Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Cybersecurity, Business Intelligence, Augmented Reality and Our Futureamazon uk

Digital Minister Matt Warman noted that the plans are aimed at keeping the UK safe but also not stand in the way of technological innovation.

“We want to make the UK the safest place to be online with pro-innovation regulation that breeds confidence in modern technology,” said Warman. “Our new law will hold firms manufacturing and selling internet-connected devices to account and stop hackers threatening people’s privacy and safety.

“It will mean robust security standards are built in from the design stage and not bolted on as an afterthought.”

The government had been keen to champion security in smart home and other IoT devices, having launched its Secure by Design code of practice for consumer IoT security in 2018. While this served as a means to advocate for stronger cyber security practices for internet-connected devices, it is a voluntary scheme at present.

The plans would appear to take the code of practice further, with legislation to be the means of ensuring that IoT device makers don’t bypass best-practice security standards.

Our opinion: This seems to be a move in the right direction because of the sheer volume of devices with weak default passwords would be a major headache in IoT security.

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Peter Flynn

Creator and director of IT Security Centre UK.

I have worked in the IT industry for many years and developed my IT security skills in particular. As this area has always been of interest to me and is more important now than ever.

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