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Security and privacy concerns prevent effective use of IoT data

  • 6 mths ago

Industrial IoT in the Time of Covid-19 – reveals majority of businesses do not share IoT data effectively across their business ecosystem but plan to in future

Research by Inmarsat, the world leader in global, mobile satellite communications, reveals relatively few businesses derive maximum benefit from the IoT data that they gather.

Most of today’s businesses only share IoT data within their own organisations, with security and privacy concerns preventing them from disseminating it to organisations in their wider supply chains. Infrequent data collection and lacking an IoT data strategy leaves many businesses surveyed struggling to extract full value from their IoT data. A more strategic, ambitious and open approach to gathering and sharing non-sensitive data could unlock substantial benefits for business struggling to make the most of IoT projects.

Collecting and sharing the right data at the right time enables companies and their partners to take better, more proactive decisions across the value chain to optimise operations as soon as a problem occurs, or even anticipate and mitigate it before it happens. Such data driven insight can help businesses reduce waste, increase productivity, improve customer service and run more sustainable operations.

According to the research, based on the interviews of 450 global respondents across the agriculture, electrical utilities, mining, oil and gas, and transport and logistics sectors, as many as 86 per cent of respondents admit their organisation does not use the data collected from IoT projects as effectively as it could. This is despite high levels of IoT adoption overall. The most prevalent barriers are security and data privacy concerns, cited as a barrier by over half (54 per cent) of all respondents, followed by a lag between data collection and availability (46 per cent) and the lack of an IoT data strategy (33 per cent).

Accelerating IoT adoption over the course of the Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the fact that many businesses’ data sharing strategies are not yet as advanced as they need to be. Currently, only 20 per cent of all organisations make non-sensitive IoT data available to anyone in their organisation, and to their partners, to access and to use. Conversely, nearly two in five (39 per cent) limit the use of IoT data to certain departments involved in their IoT projects. However, this is set to change, with a larger proportion of organisations (38 per cent) shifting towards sharing data with their wider supply chain and far fewer (20 per cent) planning on limiting IoT data to specific departments. This change is occurring as more businesses come to understand that the responsible and secure sharing of IoT data is a necessary step towards unlocking the maximum value of that data.

The research reveals that having a formal IoT data strategy is a vital step towards drawing the optimum benefits from the technology, ensuring data is produced, shared, and analysed between the right parties at the right time. Organisations with a formal IoT strategy are far more likely to gather data points in their IoT projects in real time (48 per cent of respondents compared to only 16 per cent amongst organisations without an IoT strategy).

There are also notable differences in how strategic businesses are in the usage of their IoT data based on the region they operate in and the size of their organisations. While only 23 per cent of North American businesses struggle to use IoT data effectively due to the lack of an IoT data strategy, this increases to 54 per cent of organisations in Latin America and 55 per cent in Russia and the Stans. Likewise, while 20 per cent of the largest organisations (over 5,000 employees) struggle with a lack of an IoT data strategy, 40 per cent of smaller businesses (under 500 employees) cite this as a barrier to effective IoT data use.

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