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IoT is one of the most interesting technological fields today. It is, in fact, the commercialization of a technology developed and used by the US Department of Defense for the last 15 years (and researched by DARPA back in the 1970-80s). The solutions developed from the web-based warfare have become the building bricks of the commercial IoT development.
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IoT technologies include all the connected devices – sensors, cameras, household appliances, communication platforms, etc., from vital infrastructures to wearable technologies, all the IoT systems use the same platforms for the collection, distribution, and analysis of data.
These are accompanied by other technologies: Low-energy resources: IoT platforms at the battlefield require low-energy sensors, the Smart City applications need energy-saving lighting solutions etc.; Control components; networks and infrastructure – the increase in the amount of collected data requires their upgrade; Cyber security – encryption software, identification and authentication technologies.
IoBT – IoT at the Battlefield
Already today and certainly at the future battlefield, operations will base more and more on interconnected unmanned systems.
The IoBT connects soldiers with computing, communications and sensor elements:
Smart technology on armor, radio equipment and other combat-supporting devices, on weapons, etc. in order to supply forces with more capabilities in sensing, situational awareness, risk assessment and forecasting.
Command decision making can be made on the basis of real-time analysis, incorporating information from unmanned sensors and cameras situated on the ground, air, and on the soldiers.
- Field situational awareness – monitoring, sensing, threat detection, targeting, soldier and vehicle monitoring
- Ports and borders surveillance
- Energy resources management
- Logistics and maintenance – control and command of the supply array, forecasting the equipment maintenance on real-time in from military sensing systems which enables action even before the problem occurs.
- Environmental conditions monitoring
- Medical – monitoring the soldier’s health condition at the battlefield, basing on military installations systems, wearable technologies, etc. The systems can alert on changes in health parameters.
In the defense and security context, the goal is to make the devices more rugged and secure.
Smart City / Safe City
In the civilian realm, IoT interconnected devices form the basis of the smart city. Among the major applications:
- Automatic management of lighting and traffic lights
- Infrastructures – alerting on faults and problems and an efficient management of services, including the use of connected vehicles (sensors that alert on roads that need fixing; learning from vehicles’ sudden halts on bad road planning, dangerous curves, etc.)
- Garbage disposal optimization
- Surveillance for crime and terrorism prevention
- Chemical and biological agents detection by sensors at the city central areas
- Smart parking management
- Building management – saving energy and costs, coordination
The interface between IoT military and commercial technologies can be reflected by armed forces applying smart city technologies is smart military bases, managing transportation, etc.
IoT Applications for First Responders
- First responders’ wearable devices or equipment – connected communication, bodycams, video systems, such as FirstNet in the US (data streamlined to the emergency center on real time), electronic badges for police officers or paramedics with a personal radio signal for automatic recognition in order to allow access
- Weapon sensors, e.g. for allowing only the officer owning the weapon to fire
- Sensors and devices on the victims’ side for alerting and calling for help in cases of medical emergency, robbery
- Surveillance sensors to prevent crime
IoT devices improve the response efficiency, but there are information security risks such as in first responders’ communications – preventing exposure to hostile elements.
IoT Cyber Security
Cyber security is required in both the military and civilian sectors in all levels, from cloud control systems, through network infrastructure to end devices – the sensors and other platforms.
Due to the fact that systems in the defense context have repercussions on human lives, cyber security has major significance for the companies developing or implementing IoT solutions.
The leading conference in Israel on IoT (Internet of Things) from the security perspective will be held on December 25th, 2017. The IoT 2017 Conference and Exhibition is organized by iHLS which specializes in homeland security, with the participation of the leading experts and industries of the Security IoT ecosystem in Israel and abroad.