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Our new report Cyber Security in Smart Commercial Buildings provides conclusive proof that the cyber black market, once a varied landscape of discrete, ad hoc networks of individuals motivated by ego and notoriety has become a burgeoning powerhouse of highly organized groups; Often connected with traditional crime groups (e.g., drugs cartels, mafias, terrorists cells) and nation states.

Attacks on public buildings in the last few months have caused chaos across the world and demonstrated how easy cyber attack tools, freely available online, can enable relatively low skilled individuals to acquire substantial cyber attack capabilities.

Smart Buildings undoubtedly have a great future but unless we can secure connectivity right across the building making it impregnable from cyber crimes, customers will hold back and only invest when they are convinced that the benefits outweigh the risk. In the short term this could have a negative impact on the demand for really smart buildings and other prime markets for the Internet of Things.

Cyber security is therefore critical to the future of all Smart Building services and now for buyers and operators of buildings one of the most important buying propositions that they must be satisfied on.

There is a common myth that only large organisations get “hacked”, but UK based insurer Hiscox estimates that in 2015, 43% of cyber attacks targeted small businesses and compared this to 2014 when it was 34% and 2011 when it was 18%, you can see that its easier to attack small businesses. They need to take cyber security more seriously than ever before.

It is rather ironic that Physical Security systems which provide for the safety and security of people and assets in buildings as we show in the illustration below is perceived as having the highest level of risk of all types of building elements.

The main reason for this is cameras and data recorders from some manufacturers that have proven easy to compromise. So concerns about vulnerability in this area is understandable and also a backdoor to attacking integrated building control systems and other IT networks and devices. Physical security will therefore be one of the big spenders on installing cyber security systems particularly in Smart Buildings.

However presently there appears to be a reluctance by manufactures and system integrators to take the initiative and make their products and systems secure. Some believe that their products are not vulnerable, others are concerned that the services and products available to deliver cyber security are poorly defined and not yet well conceived.

One key issue that comes out from the report is that many stakeholders still lack an understanding of the cyber threats and the devastating consequences they cause.

Our report shows that Cyber Security must to be an integral part of Smart Buildings and that by making the system cyber proof it will add further value making a better long term proposition for both the buyer and the seller.

It’s an ill wind that blows nobody any good and there is a growing number of specialist companies out there that are offering their services to overcome cyber threats. We estimate that global revenues from Smart Building Cyber Security software and services will reach $8.65 billion by the end of 2020 up from $4.26 billion in 2016 representing a healthy CAGR of 15%.

This article has been taken from our reports Cyber Security in Smart Commercial Buildings 2017 to 2021 & The Physical Security Business 2016 to 2021.

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