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IoT Device Shadows Affecting Cybersecurity

The IoT has become an integral aspect of many businesses’ operations. As these networks increase in size and complexity, managing them becomes more difficult, prompting companies to turn to third-party management solutions. Because of capabilities like device shadows, Amazon Web Services (AWS) is one of the most popular. AWS has dominated the cloud services market for years, with around a third of the market since at least 2017.

As a result, many businesses use AWS to administer their IoT networks, which has a number of advantages but also poses certain risks. Perhaps the clearest example of this dichotomy is AWS’ Device Shadow service. The Device Shadow service attempts to make communication between different devices on a network easier and more efficient. It accomplishes this by creating “shadows,” which are cloud-based files that act as a stand-in for a certain device.

These allow apps and services to access a device’s state even when it is not connected to AWS IoT. If a device disconnects from the network, whether purposefully or unintentionally, its state is still accessible to other devices and apps through its shadow. As a result, you can still send commands to endpoints that aren’t connected. There are two types of device shadows: identified and unnamed. Users can partition an endpoint into numerous shadows, each representing a different property, using named shadows.

Each device can only have one unnamed shadow, which represents the entire device as a single shadow. IoT device shadows offer a number of major benefits, many of which revolve around enhanced device communication. These are especially valuable for companies with big fleets, as controlling several endpoints in various settings can be difficult. Device shadows improve synchronisation across vast networks by acting as a proxy for disconnected devices. Assume you’re distributing a new security update throughout your company’s IoT network.

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