The Internet of Things: Convenience and Vulnerability Considerations

The Internet-of-things (Iot) is a technological advancement that can afford users a great deal of convenience. It enables remote-access features that can attract purchasers to decide on a particular make or model of smart gadgets; such as home security systems, baby monitors, smart locks, smart lighting, smart thermostat and all other Wifi enabled devices. However, the same feature can also make your home and everything stored in your smartphone, vulnerable to privacy invasion and/or man-in the-middle attacks.

Man-in-the-middle attack is a form of cybercrime that permits an unauthorized party to eavesdrop, monitor, modify, and replace critical information exchanged by users through their Wifi-connected smart gadgets and devices.

What is Iot and How Does it Work

Internet-of-things is an arrangement between physical devices with smart capabilities that allows them to connect and communicate by way of sensors and software or smart application. The convenience afforded to users is that it permits remote access as long the related devices are Wi-fi enabled. Although this feature is touted as one that gives users peace of mind since they can check on their smart homes or smart cars while away, the scenario is not always as simple and secure.

For a user to have remote access and control to a smart device, the sensors, the application and the Wifi connection work toward the integration of data into computer systems. A gadget as simple as a baby monitoring device may be touted as the best baby monitor ever because of its remote access feature. Parents will be convinced that they can have peace of mind in case they need to leave their baby to the care of a babysitter.

The remote access feature will likely be of great appeal to couples who spend long hours away from home in light of their jobs or businesses. Once cyber criminals get wind of their activities and lifestyle, they also become the most vulnerable, More so, if hackers can gain access to their other smart gadget applications that can furnish additional, useful information through the Internet-of-things.

Still, the Internet of things is not as corruptible as it may seem as there are safeguards that protect Internet communications. Vulnerability to hacking is something that happens if network-related built-in security features have been breached.

Modern Wifi routers for one, come with a Network Address Translation system that is capable of filtering out unauthorized or dubious incoming traffic. Vulnerability happens if somebody physically tampered with the default option, which may permit port forwarding without detecting and addressing breaches.

Another security feature that can prevent Iot breaches is a strong Wifi network password, which some Internet users tend to overlook.

The Good, the Bad and the Balanced Views on Heavy Use of FB as Social Media

When making reference to media sites, the first that pops into mind is Facebook (FB), then Instagram (IG), followed by Twitter. This article zeroes in on Facebook, when looking into demography that indicates countries with highest number of users.

A country that lands at the top bracket for having the most number of FB users, immediately draws negative impression. After all, rising numbers constantly make experts and observers of that country worry if social media has a good or bad effect to its people. Not a few have expressed views that excessive use of social media sites like Facebook and Instagram, promotes narcissism, instills discontentment with one’s real life conditions, as well as make people less interested in actual social interaction.

Actually, there is another side to every country’s story on why the advent of social media became an important part of people’s lives. This can be gleaned by examining not only the number of users but also the entire population and the prevalent conditions in that country.

A Closer Look at Countries Ranked as Heavy FB Users

As of January 2019, India leads the pack of countries with the highest number of Facebook users, numbering around 300 million. The US trails behind for having the second highest number of FB users at 210 million.

Should India be Worried about the Effects of Social Media on Its Citizens?

India’s number of FB users must be compared to India’s total populace in order to get a clearer picture. India has more than 1.31 billion people; denoting therefore that the current 300 million users of FB in India, represent only 21% of the country’s entire populace. When compared to that of the US, India’s proportion of FB users is lower. It turns out that out of America’s 328,392,623 population, 210 million or 63.94% of the American populace are into Facebook use.

The government of India is not too concerned, because the high numbers denote that more and more of their nationals are enjoying Internet connectivity. Majority of the rest, are still hoping to experience the same kind of enjoyment.

Should the High Percentage of Users be a Cause for Worry in the US?

Not really, since a recent PEW research revealed that about 68% of America’s Facebook users are adults. Of those adults, 74% visit FB at least once as a daily routine, as many use the site in keeping up to date with current news. Although nearly half of American teens use Facebook, this particular group no longer dominates FB’s landscape.

How About Third-World Developing Countries Ranked As Heavy FB Users?

Now let us use a smaller country like the Philippines as example, which has a current population of 109 million. Based on the latest stats, the Philippines ranks as the 6th country to have the highest number of FB participants; accounting for 75 million of its population. This Is quite significant because as it turns out, the Philippines has a greater percentage of 68.88 % of FB users, which is higher when compared to US’ 63.94% and to India’s 21%.

Report: Filipinos still world's top social media user

Report: Filipinos still world's top social media user www.cnn.ph

Posted by CNN Philippines on Friday, February 1, 2019

One significant consideration taken into account is that a great number of Filipino families are dispersed throughout the globe as immigrants. Moreover, a large part of the Philippine population comprises Overseas Filipino Workers; whilst a great many are engaged in various types of outsourced processes or services commissioned by foreign businesses. Even a simple housewife can find work-at-home jobs by reselling products of online businesses like grain and gram; to which having numerous FB connections is definitely, highly beneficial.

Social Media Posts Make the Drop Business Model an Effective Marketing Strategy

The influence created by social media sites in commercialism tends to lessen the impact of product advertising through traditional media.

As it is, social media posts at Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube or Instagram get more exposure than the paid advertising campaigns placed in digital contents. As millions of potential consumers visit their account or receive notification/tweets from time to time, a post announcing a new product can easily spread organically and virally.

This very attribute made the Drop Business Model of the fashion industry quite effective.

The Drop Business Model in a Nutshell

After building and establishing a robust relationship with consumers at social media sites, manufacturers of high-end items, drop hints about a limited edition of a new product set for release on a specific date at select outlets. Several posts follow, to raise the level of interest and excitement among product users.

In the process, the desire to be one of the few owners of the upcoming product gets more intense. Come product-dropping day at the brick and mortar outlets, hundreds of consumers will have lined up on sidewalks, in order to satisfy that desire. The “Drop” technique creates a sense of urgency that taps on the subconscious mind, by sending a message of scarcity.

Even if pricey, a limited edition item is regarded as a viable investment. Once an owner decides to resell it while still in mint condition, the much coveted product commands a high resale value. After all, reselling of articles is now a norm, which gives unsuccessful drop buyers another chance to own a limited edition item.

Online Discount Stores Have Their Own Drop Marketing Technique

Online stores execute their own “Drop” selling technique by literally dropping prices by as much as 70%. Through social media posts, there will be announcements of huge drops in prices on branded products. During those promo periods, bargain hunters looking for limited edition finds could chance upon pre-loved items no longer as pricey as their original cost.

Online discount stores like Studio, New Chic, Groupon, I Saw It First and Prozis, make their bargain sale offers more enticing by issuing discount codes or coupons that can further reduce bargain prices. There is also a Studio Discount Code for Free Shipping that is available up to a certain date, and applicable to purchases of at least £20.