Upon first glance, a utility meter might seem like the furthest thing from a security threat than you could imagine. After all, what harm could come from a device that measures the amount of electricity or gas your building consumes?
The reality is, however, that in today’s ultra-connected world, this type of naive thinking could actually lead to a serious disaster. That’s because utility meters, like the majority of other devices currently on the market, are all ultimately linked to a much larger global network.
Unfortunately, many of these devices are rife with security loopholes that can be exploited by criminals and used to facilitate much larger attacks on utility companies, government, healthcare systems and other critical infrastructure.
While a single device such as a utility meter, machine or access point might not seem like much of a security concern, when illegally controlled a criminal could gain a foot in the door to a much larger operation and could compromise critical infrastructure systems such as a power grid that could ultimately lead to a loss of life or cascading system failures.
One type of security measurement that every organization should be leveraging as protection against network device-related espionage is called a public key certificate, or a digital certificate as it is more commonly referred.
Not easily cloned, a digital certificate is a strong identity that uniquely identifies the device. The certificates help protect the identities of computers, machines or devices that interact with critical infrastructure, cloud-based services, mobile platforms and network infrastructure. This is to prevent a third party from using a spoofed identity to manipulate the network and gain access to a network.
Digital certificates are issued by an independent third-party certification authority (CA) for the purpose of providing an independent source of public key authentication. For more information on how you can leverage the protection of digital certificates in your enterprise, please visit www.entrust.com/enterprise.