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New cyber security laws have recently been proposed by the government to boost personal privacy against a range of smart devices.
The government believes that consumers will be better protected from hackers once the new legislation has been implemented. Essentially, these new laws will involve requiring digital, internet-connected product manufacturers, importers and distributors to meet reimagined standards for cyber security. And, for those businesses who don’t comply, fines of up to £10 million or 4% of global revenue will be issued.
Due to the range of “internet-connected products” the new safety standards will apply to the sale of a wide range of personal and company equipment. Indeed, the measures will aim to improve regulations on the sale of new-bought devices such as smartphones, tablets, laptops, smart TVs and wearable internet-connected products.
Meanwhile, the new cyber security policies will also outright prevent the sale of some consumer smart products in the UK that do not meet so-called baseline security requirements.
The main impact this will have on businesses will of course be the new cyber security standards that their products will have to meet. For device-makers, this will include some of the following:
A ban on passwords such as ‘password’ or ‘admin’ and other easy-to-guess options to be set as a default. Instead, passwords that come with new devices must be unique to the product and not resettable to any universal factory setting.
The minimum amount of time that vital security updates and patches will be offered for a smart device must be disclosed to the consumer at the point of sale. If a product does not come with security updates, this information must also be passed on to the consumer.
New rules ensure that manufacturers have to provide a public point of contact to make it simpler to report flaws and bugs in products.
In all, the new policies have the potential to improve standard cyber security protection that is provided to products universally and they also might increase public awareness of device vulnerabilities. Both of which would have positive effects moving forward.
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