By Purshottam Purswani, Chief Architect Business Technology Innovation Centre at Atos in India and Member of Atos Scientific Community
IoT is at the heart of digital transformation for every enterprise today. The Internet of Things (IoT) is central to digital transformation in all industry sectors. We are already seeing how IoT is a powerful enabler in city infrastructure management, in Smart grids for utilities, in the healthcare, manufacturing and automotive sectors. The Internet-of-Everything (IoE), built around the global interconnection of people, process and context, is already starting to happen.
Digital, smart sensors are increasingly becoming part of the factory ecosystem. Production components such as machines, robots and test elements are all equipped with sensors. Within factories, this means traceability and more – for example, more accurate data, which supports better procedures and more efficient production, all of which enables manufacturers to reach new conclusions and improve business processes. In the market it enables enriched experiences, usage data gathering, design evolution and new revenue streams from on-demand/Pay as you go offers, such as Michelin’s plan to charge fleets for ‘tire rental’ services based on mileage. This presents important opportunities to new businesses.
The concept of “Digital Twin” is on the rise, it significantly helps shorten the average duration of a change request by making key information available, such as laser measurement results that indicate a tolerance violation, sensor acoustics that indicate a tool disruption, torque profiles that violate the product design requirements. This enables the manufacturer to make a swift decision, to change the product design, the tool or the production sequence to resolve the issue within 24 hours. On the other hand, in-the-field/ on-the-road data contributes to further product improvement. Such data today typically gets lost or only can be tracked via studies (TÜV and VDA are the most prominent automotive examples). Digital Twin functionalities help to fetch in-use data for cars, trucks, machinery, but also deliberates on the tools that are attached to it (e.g. harvester used on a tractor).
The massive potential promised by these developments is matched by a proportionate rise in threat. McKinsey estimate that the annual value of the Internet-of-Things could be $11.1 trillion by 2025. Security is a prerequisite for successful participation. As we come to rely more than ever before on this new connectivity, so the security, reliability, and resilience of data and infrastructure gain in critical importance. Security questions are indeed often badly understood, partly because they affect different employees within the company and due to the lack of advisors with all the necessary skills who are capable of providing a universal and integrated solution. In fact, the security of IoT depends on four things: securing sensors and their operations, the confidentiality and integrity of data in transit, securing stored data and securing access to information.