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Securing 5G Assets

While everyone – us included – is excited for the 5G-fueled future, there’s one aspect too many organizations aren’t thinking about yet: security.

A massive increase in bandwidth, connect device support capabilities, and data communication speeds is great, but without a new approach to asset security 5G poses more risk than potential. New network architectures and attack vectors will almost certainly be created, giving potential threats more advanced avenues than ever.

IoT Asset Security

For an industry already plagued by a lack of universal security standards and protections, the Internet of Things (IoT) will only grow more dangerous if left unchecked. Because 5G features connectivity designed to maximize the impact of these technologies, enterprise deployment initiatives will continue to grow. And you can be sure hackers know this, too.

Since these assets will be connected to mission-critical operations moving forward, 5G security will require stronger authentication controls to protect not just IoT but users, sensitive data, traffic encryption, mobility, back-end systems, and more to ensure business success.

Autonomous Vehicles

5G will make driverless vehicles reality, but manufacturers largely haven’t considered the asset security aspects these innovations could pose. The bulk of investment in this sector has been dedicated to research and development – not how to defend these systems.

The cloud technologies that drive autonomous vehicles feature an open and flexible nature, but the potential benefits they bring to enterprises are a double-edge sword. While they create new capabilities, these next-gen networks also bring a multitude of new attack vectors to those with malicious intent.

A New Generation of Healthcare

As an industry, healthcare stands to gain tremendous value from 5G – provided asset security is up to par. Faster patient file transfers, real-time remote treatment options, and IoT-fueled innovation are just a few of the sector’s future business benefits.

However, new network connectivity also increases the risk for medical identity theft, data privacy invasions, and more. Considering 40% of all breaches targeted healthcare providers just a few years ago, these security professionals certainly have work to do.

Smarter Everything & Asset Security

The explosion of smart home technology has delivered convenience on an entirely new scale to consumers, but without stronger asset security enforcement these innovations give attackers a distributed network of millions of devices to take advantage of.

Going forward, stronger authentication methods should be considered a must. Biometric identification and security standards must not only be enforced but designed in a way to evolve alongside 5G technologies. Otherwise, virtually everyone’s private data will be put at serious risk.

Four Asset Security Measures to Think About

Despite the doom and gloom I’ve mentioned above, hope is far from lost when it comes to 5G asset security. To ensure adequate protections, enterprises and vendors should incorporate these measures:

#1 Access Controls

Many issues result from a lack of basic controls. As 5G becomes ubiquitous, organizations need to consider traditional protections like firewalls – but must also implement access-based controls to minimize the user risks that will continue to grow.

#2 Advance Malware Protection

Beyond the attacks that evade basic threat detection filters, behavior-based asset defenses will be essential to not only identify threats but effectively remove and block them from future attempts.

#3 Anomaly Detection

A combination of packet capturing, Big Data capabilities, and machine learning can help you identify 5G asset security threats not detectable otherwise. If embedded into network switches and routers, anomaly detection even creates the potential to turn devices into independent security sensors in some cases.

#4 Threat Intelligence

The best asset security solutions fail to have a lasting impact if they don’t understand how hackers think and act. You need to not only employ the proper technologies but begin to profile advanced attacks before they occur to create the actionable, proactive protections 5G demands.

Want to learn how the world’s most advanced organizations are preparing their technology management initiatives for 5G and beyond? Check out AOTMP® University’s Efficiency First® Framework Security Core Activity to learn more.