BSI first to provide verification to Government’s Internet of Things Code of Practice

The BSI has launched a compliance scheme and governance framework for the Internet of Things (IoT). The scheme allows ‘smart’ devices and applications to be assessed against the Government’s new proposed IoT Code of Practice announced earlier this month by Margot James, the Minister for Digital and the Creative Industries.

The compliance scheme allows for assessment within a digital verification framework. This enables ongoing real-time visibility of the scope, meaning and status of verification for a product or application. The framework is flexible to allow further evolution as the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport’s (DCMS) scheme is implemented. It also directly reflects the need for security provisions to be appropriate to the properties of the technology and usage.

The BSI’s new IoT compliance scheme is based on global Best Practice for information security and matched to the 13 points in the proposed IoT Code of Pactice developed by the DCMS in collaboration with the National Cyber Security Centre, manufacturers and retailers.

Government figures show that every household in the UK owns at least ten Internet-connected devices, from smoke alarms to televisions. Until now, it has been difficult to assess the safety and reliability of these devices and their applications, putting individuals’ online security, privacy and data at risk of exploitation or hacking.

Ahead of the arrival of the European Union’s new General Data Protection Regulation requirements that come into force this May, organisations both in the UK and overseas need to ensure that personal data is protected. Recent high-profile breaches have included attacks on CCTV cameras and smart watches.

Working towards a positive impact

A DCMS spokesperson said: “This Government wants everyone to benefit from the huge potential of Internet-connected devices. It’s important they are safe and have a positive impact on people’s lives. The Government has worked alongside industry to develop a tough new set of rules such that strong security measures are built into everyday technology from the moment it’s developed. We welcome the work of the BSI to help industry shape and drive compliance with the new Code of Practice.”

David Mudd, IoT development director at the BSI, responded: “There’s already at least one IoT device for every person on the planet, and this figure is set to grow exponentially as the full potential of this technology is realised. Consumers and industry need to have confidence in the safety and reliability of these new devices and applications. Standards catalyse trust between innovative technologies and innovative business models. Independent verification to a Government Code of Practice will unlock trust in the IoT both today and tomorrow.”

The BSI works as a trusted, independent convenor of communities to shape, share, embed and support innovation in the IoT, as well as the safe and reliable use of ‘smart’ applications, data and devices. Consensus agreed Best Practice, shaped by industry for industry, is helping to ensure machine-to-machine connections – ie consumer connectivity, payments and financial transactions – are secure and robust. The BSI has already developed a host of standards and guides to support digital transformation and its existing specification, PAS 212, underpins IoT interoperability.

The BSI is facilitating collaboration on IoT innovation, from transport to buildings through to autonomous systems. The organisation boasts a 1,300-strong IoT community of experts and organisations shaping new opportunities and creating industry-led Best Practice in the IoT. As technologies and business models evolve, consensus standards are developed and revised, allowing the next cycle of innovation to begin from a higher level.

*Parties interested in joining the BSI’s IoT Community should send an e-mail to iot@bsigroup.com

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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