Is it Safe to Use Temperature Loggers?
If you’ve read our previous articles about using temperature loggers in your business (whether medical or restaurant), you know they can simplify your workflow. However, like any other technology you incorporate into your business, there are security concerns. Is it safe to use temperature loggers in your business? Do you need to worry about security flaws that allow hackers into your network? Is there a way to protect your data while using IoT devices?
We’re here to answer all your questions about security with temperature loggers. And, we’ll give you some tips to keep your business safe.
What are the Security Concerns?
If you want to determine whether or not you’re comfortable using new technology in your business, you also need to recognize the main security concerns. Much of the security issues with IoT devices come from modified devices or devices with built in pathways for hackers. However, even if you buy a brand new device, from a trustworthy manufacturer, other things can go awry.
The main security concerns with IoT devices include:
- Outside cyber attacks
- Weak security protocols
- Unencrypted data (whether stored or transmitted)
- Embedded spyware
- Network compromisation
In short, whenever you connect a new device to your network, you do take some risks. Because IoT devices are from the vast world of the Internet of Things, they need a network to properly function most of the time. Of course, chances are that network is the same that you use, whether you work on personal or business tasks. Because you’re also transmitting information from that network, all that data is subject to theft or manipulation if there’s a security breach.
This means that you can have crucial business data, financial information, and personal information at the discretion of a hacker.
Are Temperature Loggers Safe?
As we mentioned, temperature loggers are part of the IoT industry. With that in mind, you have to take the same precautions you would with any other IoT device you bring into your network. That isn’t to say that they’re unsafe. However, even the most secure device can become a pathway for a cyber attack if it isn’t used properly.
That said, there is good news.
In general, temperature loggers are a fairly safe addition to your workplace. To ensure you’re getting a secure, trustworthy device, look at the manufacturer first.
Avoid buying any IoT devices (including temperature loggers) from suppliers you don’t know that you can trust. If the price seems too good to be true, it likely is. Sometimes the price is low because the supplier is getting something better than your money in return: your data.
How to Keep Your Business Safe While Using Temperature Loggers
We can speak for ourselves and say that we never produce any technology that we’re not confident has stringent security protocols. However, not every IoT device follows the same commitment. No matter what temperature logging system you use, there are extra measures you can take to keep your network, and your business, secure.
Your first defense
One of the best things about keeping your network secure is that your first step is already built in. Whether you’re looking at it from the angle of your computer or your modem, there’s a line of defense right there.
What is it?
It’s your firewall. Even if you’re not the most tech savvy person, you’ve surely encountered it at some point. The firewall is essentially a shield from potential attacks within the digital world. (Have you ever been denied access to an app or website with a warning about your firewall?) It basically makes sure that unknown, untrustworthy parties aren’t able to access your network or your data. Sometimes you also have to disable your firewall or permit access to certain software or websites so it recognizes them as a trusted source.
Make sure you have your firewalls enabled, and check their settings for the level of security you need. This may also mean enabling access for your temperature logger, but also restricting certain functions and parameters you allow it to access.
Protection beyond firewalls
What about once the temperature logger is installed and in your network?
One of the best things you can do is make sure the security in your network and all company computers is up to snuff. In general, temperature loggers don’t perform many functions online aside from recording and reading temperatures, storing the records in the cloud, and sending alerts in case of emergency.
You can also choose to allow the temperature logger, and its gateway, access to its own private network. This creates another line of defense should your network be infiltrated by a hacker. While temperature loggers may not be the first target in a cyber attack, using a separate network for any IoT device increases the security you have for each network. If anything compromises one network, the other is still secure.
Most modems are capable of creating secondary networks. Think of hotels or restaurants that have separate ‘guest’ networks.
For example: You’re at Restaurant A. You login and try to access their complimentary wi-fi. You’ll often see two networks with similar names. One may say Restaurant A, or Restaurant A Staff. Often, the other is labeled something like, Restaurant A Guest.
This ensures that visitors can still access wi-fi, although it’s not the network that secure business data is kept on.
AgrowTronics.com has an article with more tips for improving Security in IoT.
Related: Do temperature loggers store information?
If you’re asking this question, you probably realize that not all data theft happens via cyber attack. The physical security of your IoT devices can be just as concerning as their online security. While these devices do need the internet to fully operate, that doesn’t mean that data only goes through the internet.
Some IoT devices do store information, and many store at least very rudimental bits of data. How much, and what exactly they store depends a lot on what you use them for. When it comes to temperature loggers, you can rest easy. Temperature loggers, in general, don’t store your data. Unlike previous, electronic, temperature loggers, they simply transmit information to their cloud database. Old electronic loggers often kept logs stored on the device itself, which then needed to be uploaded and stored on a hard drive.
New technology allows us to create temperature loggers that have better security, and that store very little data. So, in the case of a theft, there won’t be any valuable, sensitive data to gain from your temperature logger.