With the adoption of Internet of Things on the rise––Gartner expects IoT devices to hit 20.4 billion this year––many enterprises have been incorporating IoT into their broader digital transformation strategy to stay ahead of the game. But with the increase of connected devices also comes more threats. Just as Gartner predicted a boom in IoT, a Forrester report also warned of a rise in attacks in 2020, expecting cybercriminals to target consumer and enterprise IoT devices in an effort to exploit customers and manufacturers.

A new report from Syniverse and Omdia—IoT is transforming the enterprise. Find out how your peers are doing it—explores how IoT devices are being used by the enterprise, especially related to security concerns.

The report finds that businesses in North America and Europe are shifting to private internet for IoT, spurred by worries over malware and data theft. According to the research, half of organizations are using a private LTE network instead of a public one, to beef up security.

SEE: Cybersecurity: Let’s get tactical (ZDNet/TechRepublic special feature) | Download the free PDF version (TechRepublic)

Integration of IoT is the No. 1 obstacle for businesses, according to the report, which states that “50% of enterprises report they do not have dedicated teams, processes or policies for IoT cybersecurity.” Security is a close second.

“Clearly, there is strong demand to expand the use of IoT solutions in enterprises,” Alexandra Rehak, head of IoT practice at Omdia, said in the report. “But to realize this potential, enterprises need fully secure, easy-to-deploy and highly flexible ways to support integrating IoT into their businesses and processes.”

Here are three takeaways from the report:

  1. Improving current performance for IoT is the priority, over expanding services

As businesses grapple with IoT deployment, the top priority is to continue to build up performance, the report states—meaning improving efficiency, quality, and customer experience. New solutions for customers is not the top priority.

2. Almost everyone is using, or considering the use of, private networks

“Data, network and device security” are the top obstacles for IoT adoption in the enterprise, according to the report, which has hampered deployment. More than 50% of respondents spend more than 20% on security, of their total budget.

3. IoT deployment varies by sector

IoT adoption is not uniform across industries, the report found. While connected security represents 70% adoption across all sectors, each has individual priorities for its customers. Fintech companies look to IoT for solutions for localized terminals for remote payment. Worker safety is the focus of IoT for many manufacturers. And retail and hospitality sectors are harnessing the power of IoT in the development of smart building systems.

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