Trust Concerns

Some of the posts discuss the Internet of Things (IoT) primarily in matters affecting user’s trust in the technology. Humans rely on technology and wish it to be dependable. Internet of Things systems have permeated all aspects of our lives: from our body, our home, our work and city, to electricity, water, oil and gas – mega industries powering our planet. As things to people ratio keeps increasing, our reliance on Internet connected things keeps growing. But what makes them dependable? Trust is a psychological state of mind. As researchers have shown it would not be right to consider trust in technology without considering the human aspect, as a dependable computer system is a social matter as much as it is an engineering matter (Clarke, et al., 2006).
Recognizing the importance of trust in IoT, NIST published 17 “Trust Concerns” affecting IoT users (Voas, et al., 2018). They include matters such as usability, reliability, security, and data integrity.

This series of postings sheds light on key concerns
revealing the intricate nature of trust in IoT.

Ubiquitous Computing and the Internet of Things

Provides a historical background for human-centric paradigms which preceded IoT. The tenets of Ubiquitous Computing and Ambient Intelligence hold as true as ever since they promote trustworthiness through wellbeing, calmness, and smooth interaction.

Webinar Review

Lays down main goals and challenges for businesses adopting IoT. Through the lens of one specific industry incumbent pitching their solution we come to see that IoT enablers (providers, manufacturers, integrators, etc.) will depict the problem which they solve as the primary challenge for IoT adoption, which is never the case.

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Article Review: IoTT

Examines more closely modes of interaction with technology in what is called the Internet of Tangible Things. By finding natural and effective ways to lend the technology to our senses we stand a better chance of understanding the technology, making it less alien, and more comfortable.

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White Paper Review: Edge Computing

Takes a closer look into edge analytics, providing insight into what companies hope to achieve by implementing edge analytics, and what criteria should be used in deciding whether a specific IoT project stands to benefit from edge analytics.

One-Minute Paper: Information

Makes several connections between information and trust. Information appropriateness is critical for an IoT system to be perceived as providing the right value for the user, thus promoting trust. However, the more valuable the information is, the more privacy concerns come into play. Edge analytics, on top of their technical merits, mitigate privacy concerns.

Article Review: Ethics in Design

Concerned with ethics. Ethical design is one which honors user values. It is a meta level of discourse. A design which honors privacy as a major user value, as well as a design which honors smooth and calm interaction as a major user value are both examples of the same thing. Above all, trusting the technology means feeling in control of it, rather than being led by it.

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White Paper Review: Smart Buildings Security

Discusses risk. It does so in the context of smart buildings, a type of application which can gravely affect the wellbeing of people in the billions. Trust is bound to be compromised if people feel uncomfortable at work for instance, starting from lighting and temperature conditions, going through their day to day security and privacy, and ending in their safety in life threatening situations.

Video: Trust and IoT

Takes a more lighthearted approach, making use of a short video, surveying some of the more absurd trust-breaking security incidents of recent times. This serves to reinforce the narrative of the very personal impact a compromised IoT product can have on each and every one of us.

Clarke, K., Hardstone, G., Rouncefield, M. & Sommerville, I., 2006. Trust in Technology: A Socio-Technical Perspective. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer.

Voas, J., Kuhn, R., Laplante, P. & Applebaum, S., 2018. Internet of Things (IoT) Trust Concerns, Gaithersburg, MD: NIST.