IoT and Cloud Brokers a future made more secure together.

An interesting concept within the devices and sensors of the IoT universe is the concept of presence. Knowing someone is there because they are connected to the IoT instance or device. Given that you could by knowing someone was physically present do a number of things what should happen next?

Automation is the boon of cloud. It is one of the reasons you can build and deploy cloud solutions and release control. Because via automation and utility pricing you will pay for less in the end. You do run into the reality of pent up demand when moving to the cloud and you have to account for that. But over time through management you can save money. Analysts peg that automation savings at 20% of the IT budget. In reality those savings are more like 10% of the IT budget and greater productivity. Imagine what you could do with IoT devices to reduce the cost of your physical infrastructure.

1. Your badge connects to the building management system. When you enter a room the lights go on. When there is no one in a room the lights go off. There would need to be a pause and some rooms wouldn’t have the lights on or off all the time. Bathrooms would be blinking all the time (on off, on off) if you don’t measure/manage that part.

2. That same badge would enable you to log into the conference system in the conference room without having to do anything. Perhaps a pop-up offering a generic login and asking for a conference number would be needed for conference rooms that are booked all day long.

Just those two things could reduce cost and increase the productivity of people. There are three things about meetings that drive me up the wall. This fixes two of the three right out of the box. The meeting starts at 9 am. No it does not start at 9:03. Three minutes wasted while someone dials the conference number and someone else connects to the room pc to enable the presentation. The other frustration is going to a conference room you have never been to before that has just been renovated and someone decided that light switches shouldn’t be by doors.

There are so many other things that IoT devices could help organizations with. Simply mapping traffic flows in elevators helps. I posted an article on Cloudtweaks talking about the concept of using IoT devices to manage elevator flows. Imagine the flow in the future when you can enable elevators to know what floors have peak and low times. Imagine never having to sit in a stuck elevator and connect via the phone in the elevator. The system knows that elevators stop on floors not in between floors. So someone is automatically sent to fix the elevator.

Parking systems could be greatly improved. As you enter a parking garage a screen will tell you how many (if any) spaces there are remaining in the garage. It is a simple IoT device that detects the presence of a car. You place it in the middle of the parking space so that smaller cars aren’t ignored. It broadcasts when there is a car and when there isn’t. So as you drive into the garage you know how many spaces there are open and what floor they are on.

This brings me to my new concept for today. The reality of IoT and Broker. As market’s mature brokers appear. I have argued for a number of years now that Brokers for cloud computing are going to be a little different than people expect. Today the analysts project and define brokers for cloud computing as aggregators of cloud services. But there is so much more. First off there is this merging reality of security and IoT devices. I like to calls this the IoST and the IoTS. The Internet of secure things and the internet of things security. Brokers will be able to have more remote security devices deployed both in the CSP (Cloud Service Provider) as well as the organizations connecting to the Broker. This will enable simple 3 or 4 factor authentication and validation. By evaluating some of the options of mesh networks as I discussed yesterday you can enable multi-path data flow. You can enable security around data in motion and at rest that can be automated.

IoT presents the potential for so many automated services the broker could provide. Not just as an aggregator of cloud services (IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS) but even beyond. Now the broker can offer aggregated identity management and authentication beyond simply your name or something on a token and your password. Want to set up a new CSP for people in your organization to use? Your broker can do that in a matter of minutes. You simply have to wait for the new CSP to appear in your Service Catalog.

Broker and IoT is a combination that will change how CSP’s and organizations do business I promise.

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Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow.