A recent report issued by venture capital firm Wing titled “IoT Startup State Of The Union: An Update” looks at the current Internet of Things (IoT) startup community in terms of what occurred over the past year of 2016. As a startup/venture capital company, naturally the report findings focus on financial events. In brief, here are a few choice items.
- Startup funding in 2016 decreased, yet total amounts raised increased year-to-year
- Average deal size rose significantly in 2016
- Autos/Transport investment accelerated in the latter part of 2016
- Health remained good
- Other categories underperformed in terms of deal volume
- Drone hardware deals fell, but other drone investments expanded
- Industrial/Enterprise IoT was consistently driven by technologies that can produce swift returns on investments
As the IoT expands and more startups climb onboard, there is still one sore spot in the equation: security. According to the report, “IoT insecurity remains a huge headache—and a significant entrepreneurial opportunity.” The important way to look at that statement is to acknowledge the “headache”, while amplifying “opportunity”.
Turning the amp up to 11 on security may not seem as glamorous as pursuing the more headline-grabbing components of IoT applications. Security induces visions of dark individuals with sour faces hunched over laptops and tablets, stealing everything that’s not nailed down while pale individuals with dour faces, also hunched over laptops and tablets, pursue them. That’s just an ephemeral reason for the “huge headache” security issues inspire.
Probably the two biggest reasons for security problems are time to market and evolution. All companies – large, small and startup – are faced with tight timelines to get their goods on the market. These timelines, a.k.a., times to market, are strict and highly demanding, so much so that all the designers have time for is the design and test to see if the product works. At best, security is an afterthought.
Then there’s the evolution of the criminal element. The hackers, the phishers, and the scammers are some of the most highly educated, imaginative, talented, and creative creatures on the earth. As products and software evolve so do they. Even the most secure products, those well thought and protected, are still at risk because as each protection is placed, there’s someone out there figuring out how to break in. Therefore, it’s simple to see and safe to say that security will always be an issue, as it has been since the first day a computer connected to another computer over a landline telephone.
So how about those security opportunities? To find out what find out what they are and acquire some positive resources, check out the 2017 Security Report, Research & Roundtable, which is a free download. You will definitely get a more in-depth look at this critical topic. ~MD