[POLICY] APEC is at the forefront of IoT cybersecurity

Faced with the ubiquity of smart devices in our daily lives, all the actors involved in the development of these new technologies have taken more or less effective measures to protect their use. The number of connected devices in circulation is expected to exceed 20 billion in 2021, representing a market estimated at $1.4 billion. However, this hyper-connectivity goes hand-in-hand with the multiplication of security vulnerabilities: Kaspersky identified more than 100 million cyberattacks in the first half of 2019 alone. In order to address these threats, which cannot be set aside, the US-based National Institute of Standards and Technology (NINT) has published a guide to gather the functionalities that should be incorporated in commercialized smart devices. This report is largely inspired by those published in 2017 by the European Network and Information Security Agency (ENISA) and in 2019 by the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI). While it is obvious that these issues are given impetus, one actor stands out from the rest of the IoT market for its particular attention to cybersecurity norms and standards: intergovernmental organization APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation). The forum, which brings together 21 countries from the Pacific Ocean region, reaffirms its leadership in securing the digital economy after it produced a  “Framework for Securing the Digital Economy” and the “APEC Internet and Digital Economy Roadmap”. To this end, the APEC Trade and Investment Committee has organized several seminars in Santiago and Malaysia to spread the word about its new standards and norms on smart devices.