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Internet of Things (IoT) Overview & Security Cheat Sheet by

Internet of Things (IoT) Security best practices, standards, software, cloud and hardware

IoT Security Best Practices

1. Maintain Up-to-Date Firmware:
Always maintain your IoT devices' firmware and software up-to-­date. Manufa­cturers frequently publish security fixes to fix flaws.
2. Make Use Of Strong Passwords:
Create robust passwords for each IoT device and change them freque­ntly. Do not use default or simple passwords.
3. Implement Encryp­tion:
For data transfer between IoT devices and servers, implement encryp­tion. End-to-end encryption should be used, and powerful encryption methods like AES should be used.
4. Regulate Network Access:
Regulate how much network access IoT devices have. To prevent unwanted access, use virtual private networks (VPNs) and firewalls.
5. Implement Two-Factor Authen­tic­ation:
When logging into IoT networks, devices, and data, use two-factor authen­tic­ation.
6. Implement Access Control Techniques
to limit access to IoT devices based on identi­ties, roles, and permis­sions.
7. Track and Analyze IoT Traffic:
Track and examine IoT device traffic to and from the devices to look for unusual or suspicious activity. To recognize and stop assaults, employ intrusion detection and prevention systems (IDS/IPS).
8. Use Secure Protocols:
To commun­icate data between IoT devices and servers, use secure protocols like HTTPS, TLS, and SSL.
9. Segment IoT networks from the main network
to stop lateral attacker movement in the event of a breach. Utilize network segmen­tation strategies like VLANs and subnets.
10. Educate Users:
Inform users of safe device usage and IoT security recomm­ended practices. Show them how to spot questi­onable activity and report it.
11. Disable unneeded Services:
To lessen the attack surface on IoT devices, disable any unneeded services or protocols.
12. Regularly verify your security protocols
including vulner­ability scanning, penetr­ation testing, and security audits.
13. Use Trustw­orthy IoT Devices:
Only use trustw­orthy IoT devices from recognized manufa­ctu­rers. Before buying, do your research on the gadgets to make sure they adhere to privacy and security standards.
14. Safely Store Data:
Use encryption and access control techniques to safely store IoT data, including backups and archives.
15. Secure Key Management with HSM
Implement Hardware Security Modules (HSMs) for secure key management in IoT devices. Use HSMs to generate, store, and protect crypto­graphic keys used for encryp­tion, decryp­tion, and digital signat­ures. HSMs provide a tamper­-re­sistant enviro­nment for key storage, preventing unauth­orized access or extraction of keys.
IoT data security is essential for protecting the integrity and safety of IoT networks and devices. To reduce risks, IoT security needs regular monito­ring, updates, and enhanc­ements. You can defend your devices, data, and infras­tru­cture from cyber threats by being watchful and taking a proactive approach.

Comparison between device SDKs and embedded SDKs

Device SDKs
Embedded SDKs
Collection of software libraries and tools for devices
Software develo­pment tools for embedded systems
Hardware platform
Specific devices or hardware platforms
Embedded systems or microc­ont­rollers
Abstra­ction Level
Higher­-level APIs and services
Low-level access to hardware periph­erals and interfaces
Device integr­ation, data collec­tion, device management
Firmware develo­pment, low-level software
Develo­pment enviro­nment
Integr­ation with popular develo­pment enviro­nments
Specia­lized develo­pment enviro­nments
Use Cases
Smart devices, IoT devices, hardware periph­erals
Embedded systems, microc­ont­rol­lers, real-time systems

Microc­ont­rollers boards

is a publicly available electr­onics platform providing a range of microc­ont­rollers and develo­pment boards, featuring an accessible progra­mming interface and a user-f­riendly develo­pment enviro­nment.
Raspberry Pi:
a widely used single­-board computer that functions as a microc­ont­roller and operating system combined.
due to its low power consum­ption, this compact and affordable Wi-Fi microc­ont­roller is frequently used in Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
The ESP32:
a well-known microc­ont­roller with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi integrated in that offers improved functi­ona­lity.
Microc­ont­rollers in the STM32 family are frequently used in industrial and commercial IoT applic­ations because of their toughness and robust­ness.
a family of microc­ont­rollers that are well-liked in IoT and embedded systems due to their low power needs and usability.
is a family of microc­ont­rollers that is frequently utilized in IoT applic­ations because of its great perfor­mance and low power requir­ements.
a collection of microc­ont­rollers that are frequently used in Internet of Things applic­ations and feature integrated periph­erals and commun­ication interf­aces.
Texas Instru­ments MSP430:
a collection of ultra-­low­-power microc­ont­rollers that are typically seen in batter­y-p­owered Internet of Things gadgets.
Nordic Semico­nductor nRF52:
a collection of high-p­erf­orm­ance, low-power microc­ont­rollers used commonly in Internet of Things (IoT) applic­ations that require wireless connec­tions.

Network Topologies

Star Topology:
IoT devices are connected to a central hub.
Mesh Topology:
IoT devices are connected to each other in a decent­ralized network.
Bus Topology:
IoT devices are connected to a common data transm­ission line.
Ring Topology:
IoT devices are connected in a circular network.
Tree Topology:
IoT devices are connected in a hierar­chical network.
Hybrid Topology:
Combines two or more topologies to form a more complex network.

Cloud platforms for IoT

A complete suite of cloud computing services, encomp­assing IoT services, designed to empower developers in creating, deploying, and overseeing IoT applic­ations.
Microsoft Azure:
is a compre­hensive cloud computing platform offering a wide array of services to facilitate the develo­pment, testing, deploy­ment, and management of IoT applic­ations.
Google Cloud Platform (GCP):
A suite of cloud computing services that empower developers to create, test, and deploy IoT applic­ations using Google's robust infras­tru­cture.
IBM Watson IoT:
A cloud-­based service that empowers developers with the capabi­lities to construct, oversee, and analyze IoT applic­ations effici­ently.
Oracle IoT:
A cloud-­based service that enables developers to effect­ively build and manage IoT applic­ations utilizing Oracle's advanced infras­tru­cture.
A platform designed to simplify the creation and deployment of IoT applic­ations, providing tools for seamless device connec­tivity, efficient data manage­ment, and intuitive dashboard creation.
Salesforce IoT:
A platform tailored for seamless integr­ation and management of IoT devices and data within the Salesforce ecosystem.
Siemens MindSp­here:
A cloud-­based platform specif­ically developed for industrial IoT applic­ations, equipped with robust tools for data analytics, machine learning, and predictive mainte­nance.
Cisco IoT Cloud Connect:
A cloud-­based platform providing management services for connec­tivity of IoT devices, ensuring secure and scalable commun­ication between devices.
GE Predix:
A cloud-­based platform offering tools for data analytics, machine learning, and predictive mainte­nance to facilitate the constr­uction and deployment of industrial IoT applic­ations.
SAP Leonardo IoT:
A cloud platform that provides a wide range of tools for data proces­sing, analytics, and machine learning to help developers build and deploy effective IoT applic­ations.
PTC ThingWorx:
A cloud-­based platform tailored for building and deploying industrial IoT applic­ations that provides tools for device connec­tivity, data proces­sing, and visual­iza­tion.
Alibaba Cloud IoT:
A cloud-­based platform offering a range of services for IoT applic­ations, including device manage­ment, data proces­sing, and analytics.
Baidu Cloud IoT:
A chinese cloud-­based platform equipped with tools for device connec­tivity, data proces­sing, and analytics, along with machine learning and AI services.
An IoT cloud platform that facili­tates the constr­uction and admini­str­ation of IoT applic­ations, offering a suite of tools for seamless device connec­tivity, efficient data proces­sing, and insightful analytics.
AWS IoT Greeng­rass:
A cloud-­based platform empowering IoT applic­ations with edge computing capabi­lities, allowing data processing and analysis to occur at the network's edge for improved efficiency and respon­siv­eness.

Real-time operating systems (RTOS)

Mbed OS:
An open-s­ource RTOS for IoT devices, supporting multiple commun­ication protocols.
A lightw­eight and portable open-s­ource RTOS for resour­ce-­con­str­ained IoT devices.
An open-s­ource RTOS optimized for low-power consum­ption and diverse commun­ication protocols in IoT.
An open-s­ource RTOS with a standa­rdized API for microc­ont­rollers in IoT devices.
An open-s­ource RTOS for embedded systems and IoT devices with support for various archit­ect­ures.
An open-s­ource RTOS with broad commun­ication protocol support, including IPv6, for IoT.
An open-s­ource RTOS widely used in IoT devices with support for multiple archit­ect­ures.
A commercial RTOS with a small memory footprint and efficient context switching for resour­ce-­con­str­ained IoT devices.
An open-s­ource RTOS for IoT devices with limited resources, supporting multiple archit­ect­ures.
Nucleus RTOS:
A commercial RTOS with low latency, high throug­hput, and real-time perfor­mance for industrial automation and automotive applic­ations.
A commercial RTOS with high reliab­ility, real-time perfor­mance, and multi-­arc­hit­ecture support for critical IoT applic­ations.
Micrium OS:
A commercial RTOS with fast context switching and a low memory footprint for low-power IoT devices.
Critical applic­ations that demand real-time perfor­mance might benefit from RTOS in the IoT by getting predic­table and determ­inistic response times. They are employed in health­care, automo­tive, and industrial automa­tion, and because they feature low-power modes, they are perfect for use in IoT devices that run on batteries. In IoT systems, RTOS is crucial for quick and dependable proces­sing.

IoT standards and protocols

802.11 (Wi-Fi):
A standard for wireless local area networks that are widely used in IoT applic­ations
is a widely used low-power wireless protocol for industrial and home automation applic­ations.
For low-power Internet of Things devices, this wireless protocol is used in home automation applic­ations.
is a low-power, long-range wireless protocol that's widely used in Internet of Things applic­ations like smart cities and smart agricu­lture.
a commonly used wide-area, low-power network protocol for IoT applic­ations like asset tracking and enviro­nmental monito­ring.
CoAP (Const­rained Applic­ation Protocol):
A lightw­eight protocol for IoT devices that are designed for use in constr­ained enviro­nments such as smart homes and industrial automa­tion.
MQTT (Message Queuing Telemetry Transp­ort):
A protocol for lightw­eight messaging between IoT devices and servers.
HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol):
A protocol that is widely used in IoT applic­ations for commun­ication between devices and servers over the internet.
OPC UA (Open Platform Commun­ica­tions Unified Archit­ect­ure):
A standard for commun­ication between industrial automation devices.
KNX (Konnex):
a standa­rdized protocol for home automation that facili­tates commun­ication between devices produced by various manufa­ctu­rers.
A wireless protocol that is widely used in IoT applic­ations for short-­range commun­ication between devices.
NFC (Near Field Commun­ica­tion)
A wireless protocol widely employed in IoT applic­ations to enable contac­tless commun­ication between devices. It allows for secure and convenient data exchange over short distances.
Thread An IPv6-based wireless protocol optimized for low-power IoT devices. It finds extensive usage in home automation applic­ations, providing reliable and efficient connec­tivity for smart devices within a network.
UDP (User Datagram Protocol):
A protocol that is widely used in IoT applic­ations for lightw­eight, real-time commun­ication between devices.
DMX512 (Digital Multip­lex):
A protocol that is widely used in stage lighting and archit­ectural lighting applic­ations.
A standard for managing IoT devices over the internet.
A standard for real-time commun­ication between IoT devices in extremely resour­ce-­con­str­ained enviro­nments.
IEC 61400-25:
A standard for commun­ication between wind turbines and grid management systems.
ISO 15118:
A standard for commun­ication between electric vehicles and charging infras­tru­cture.
A standard for defining data models and commun­ication protocols for smart IoT devices.
A version of MQTT that is designed for use in wireless sensor networks.
OPC UA PubSub:
A protocol for real-time commun­ication between industrial automation devices.
A protocol for messag­e-o­riented middleware that is used in IoT applic­ations for reliable, asynch­ronous commun­ica­tion.
BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy):
A wireless protocol that is widely used in IoT applic­ations for short-­range commun­ication between devices.
ISA100 Wireless:
A standard for wireless commun­ication in industrial automation applic­ations.
A wireless protocol that is widely used in process automation applic­ations.
A protocol for commun­ication between industrial devices.


Electric motors are devices that utilize electrical energy to rotate objects and are extens­ively utilized in various applic­ations such as robotics, industrial automa­tion, and HVAC systems.
Solenoid valves are employed in numerous applic­ations to regulate the flow of fluids or gases. They find usage in systems such as irrigation systems, pneumatic systems, and HVAC systems.
Piezoe­lectric actuators are devices that convert electrical energy into mechanical motion. They have diverse applic­ations in activities such as scanning probe micros­copy, nanopo­sit­ioning, and microp­osi­tio­ning.
Hydraulic actuators generate mechanical motion using hydraulics and are commonly found in heavy-duty equipment like constr­uction tools, industrial machinery, and aerospace applic­ations.
Pneumatic actuators utilize compressed gas or air energy to create mechanical motion, enabling control over the final control elements.
Shape memory alloys (SMAs) are employed as actuators in various fields, including robotics and medical equipment, owing to their ability to change shape in response to temper­ature or electrical stimul­ation.
Electr­oactive polymers (EAPs) find applic­ation as actuators in soft robotics and biomimetic systems, simulating the mobility and flexib­ility of natural muscles.
Shape-­memory polymers (SMPs): Because they can adapt to changes in temper­ature, they are used as actuators in a variety of fields, including aerospace, robotics, and smart textiles.
Electr­ostatic actuators: in order to manipulate particles and regulate movement, they are used in microe­lec­tro­mec­hanical systems (MEMS) and microf­lui­dics.
Thermal bimorph actuators are used in many MEMS and sensor­-re­lated applic­ations.


Temper­ature sensors are commonly utilized in a variety of applic­ations, including home automa­tion, HVAC systems, and food storage, to accurately assess the temper­ature of their immediate surrou­ndings. Thermo­cou­ples, RTDs (resis­tance temper­ature detect­ors), and thermo­siphons are among the examples of temper­ature sensors frequently employed in these contexts.
Pressure sensors find widespread use in industrial automa­tion, automo­tive, and medical devices, where monitoring the pressure of gases or liquids is crucial. Optical, capaci­tive, and piezor­esi­stive sensors are just a few examples of pressure sensors utilized in these applic­ations.
Humidity sensors play a signif­icant role in HVAC systems, building automa­tion, and enviro­nmental monitoring systems by measuring the moisture content in the air. Capacitive humidity sensors, resistive humidity sensors, and thermal conduc­tivity sensors are among the various types of humidity sensors employed in these domains.
Accele­rom­eters are extens­ively utilized in the automo­tive, aerospace, and industrial automation sectors for monitoring accele­ration or vibration. Capacitive and MEMS (Micro­-El­ect­ro-­Mec­hanical Systems) accele­rom­eters are examples of such sensors commonly employed in these indust­ries.
Light sensors: photod­etector devices that detect light are known as light sensors. Photod­iodes, photor­esi­stors, photot­ran­sis­tors, and photov­oltaic sensors are typical varieties of light detectors. Applic­ations like mobile device light detection can make use of these compon­ents.
Gas sensors are essential for the identi­fic­ation of various gases in enviro­nmental monito­ring, industrial automa­tion, and medicinal applic­ations. Carbon monoxide, oxygen, and hydrogen sensors are just a few of the sensors that are frequently used in these sectors.
In robotics, consumer electr­onics, and automotive applic­ations, magnetic sensors are frequently utilized because they can monitor a magnetic field's strength and direction. Magnet­ore­sis­tive, Hall-e­ffect, and fluxgate sensors are some types of sensors.
Gyroscopes are common in robotics, virtual reality, and naviga­tion. They are sensors that measure angular velocity. MEMS gyrosc­opes, fiber optic gyrosc­opes, and ring laser gyroscopes are a few examples.

Comparison between sensors and actuators

Detect and measure physical or enviro­nmental changes
Control or manipulate physical systems
Physical or enviro­nmental changes
Electrical or other types of energy
Electrical signals or data
Mechanical motion
Important for data collection and monitoring systems
Essential for control and automation systems
Often networked with other sensors or devices
Controlled by sensors or other devices
Power requir­ements
Generally low power
Generally high power

Firmware Over-t­he-Air (FOTA) updates

IoT devices can have their firmware updated remotely through a wireless network using firmware over-t­he-air (FOTA) upgrades without physical access or user interv­ention, ensuring that the devices are safe and current.

GPS modules

Adafruit Ultimate GPS Breakout:
A GPS module that provides accurate location data for IoT devices, with support for various commun­ication protocols.
u-blox NEO-M8N GPS Module:
A compact and high-p­rec­ision GPS module with low power consum­ption, ideal for use in IoT devices.
SparkFun GPS-RTK2 Board:
A GPS module that supports real-time kinematic (RTK) positi­oning, providing centim­ete­r-level accuracy for IoT applic­ations.
GlobalTop Gms-u1LP GPS Module:
A low-power GPS module with fast time-t­o-f­irs­t-fix and low power consum­ption, ideal for use in batter­y-p­owered IoT devices.
A GPS module with low power consum­ption and support for various commun­ication protocols, making it ideal for use in IoT devices.
Quectel L76-L GPS Module:
A high-s­ens­itivity GPS module with low power consum­ption and support for multiple satellite systems, making it ideal for use in IoT devices.
GPS modules in IoT provide real-time location data for assets, vehicles, and people. They enable tracking and monitoring in the logistics, transp­ort­ation, and healthcare indust­ries. GPS modules are essential for accurate and reliable location inform­ation in IoT systems.


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