Is IoB a boon or a bane?

In the last five years, devices on IoT(Internet of Things) has doubled. They are everywhere, from wearable fitness devices to your electrical appliances in the house, connected to your wifi and your mobile devices. All these devices are collecting data basis patterns of usage, frequency of use and persona profiles defining the behaviour and interests of the user. And, this behavioural data analysis is called IoB(Internet of Behaviour). IoB can be used in business, workplace, finance, personal and other fields.

Gartner foretells that by the end of 2025, more than half of the world’s population will be subject to at least one IoB plan, whether private, commercial or government. At the same time, its increased use does raise questions of data abuse and privacy.

Most daily tasks and actions that once needed a process or human interaction are now simplified. For example, both Facebook and Instagram use their users’ behavioural data to display advertisements, which helps businesses get connected with their potential audience. Even the Covid-19 pandemic, the world has increasingly used IoB in the health industry, especially in contact tracing. Hence Internet of Behaviour (IoB) can be the most potent tool for marketing and sales purpose and increase business by knowing the choices of customers and the latest trends. This data analysis is not done on data collected online but can also be done if a person willingly or knowingly enters the system.

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Though however beneficial it is, the bigger question is, it is ethically correct or not? With so much data available on the internet has given birth to cybercriminals, which collect and sell hacked data like property access codes, confidential data on phones, even bank access codes. Cybersecurity apps are being developed to battle this and help protect the user from fraud. Each case can result in “damage” as serious as potential injury or loss of life, damage to physical property, or even a threat to national security. It is essential to understand that when IoT is developed, multiple partners share the information, what are legal compliances, security measures are being used. For Example — In fitness tracking devices, information is shared by both devices manufactured and mobile manufacturers.

While IoB will be critical for organizations to assess consumers better through collected data, they will have to comprehend better risk management strategies, data privacy rules, and compliance to support these new devices. New network security protocols are being developed, and companies must be increasingly vigilant and proactive. However, the debate over data collection and responsible use will be there; this is just the beginning!