As part of the international IFA fair, the experts of the IoT Security Labs of AV-TEST Institute handed out the “Approved Smart Home Product” awards to pioneering manufacturers pushing security by design. In addition to exchanging ideas with manufacturers, our experts looked out for new products for performing upcoming tests.
Connected everyday products unstoppable
Since 1924, the International Radio Exhibition in Berlin, Germany, called IFA, has been one of the first industrial fairs in the world. Since then, the event has become one of the leading electronics trade fairs. Above all, the development of IoT inspires manufacturers, the market and the IFA itself. More than a quarter of a million visitors attend the six-day exhibition to discover new products and trends from more than 1,800 international manufacturers.
For years now, IFA has been developing into a gigantic window in the field of networking and automation of consumer and entertainment electronics for consumers. And products presented here often end up fast in private households and also find rapid dissemination in the daily lives of consumers. Reason enough for the security experts of our IoT-Labs to look around and to examine product groups for new highly relevant comparative tests, such as smart home devices or wearables. In previous product comparisons – for example in the tests of smart home bases, IP cameras, fitness trackers, smart door locks or children’s watches – the AV-TEST institute regularly exposed dangerous weak points, informed manufacturers and users and thus ensured possible product improvements and practices active consumer protection.
Certified products for consumer security
Not all manufacturers are enthusiastic when their products appear in our unannounced and independent tests. After all, most manufacturers are more interested in the rapid market introduction of their products and significantly less and often not at all for the security of their customers. Accordingly, such products often fail in our tests.
But there are also some manufacturers who are aware of their responsibility for the IT security of their products and who ensure the privacy of their customers. These manufacturers, when they develop their products, check product security, the security of connected apps and Internet connections and services, providing security by design. Such well-developed products are mostly doing well in our security tests. And some manufacturers go one step further and even give their customers a security promise through our certification tests. The promise is, that they’ve done everything to check their IoT devices or smart services to the best of their knowledge and state of the art testing for possible vulnerabilities. You identify these products by our certificate “Safe IoT Product”.
While the AV-TEST Institute has been a pioneer in the field of research, testing and certification for several years, others are slowly realizing the need for IoT security. Therefore, AV-TEST is involved in the advisory boards of state organizations, such as the German Federal Office for Information Security BSI, police, as well as business associations, such as eco – Association of the Internet Industry, Bitkom and insurance companies. The unstoppable connection and exchange of data from devices of everyday life with the Internet will make our life easier, but also opens up completely new problems and challenges. In addition to the security of the functions guaranteed by data processing, this also includes the protection of the data generated during use. A good example here is the wide field of medical devices. Here it is of the utmost importance that neither false nor manipulated data can change, disturb or prevent the functioning. Likewise, everyone immediately sees the need for solid privacy. However, the same basically applies to every device connected to the Internet.
We are therefore pleased that manufacturers have been accompanying us on the way to secure IoT products for quite some time. At IFA, we were delighted to hand over the certificates for the passed security tests to company representatives who are committed to delivering one of the most important consumer protection issues of certified IT security. We would like to thank Bosch, Devolo, Telekom, eQ-3 and NUKI.