Improving Security in Modern Robotics

Applied Tech Review | Tuesday, October 05, 2021

Engineers in robotics must consider how robotics will impact the future, how they will be employed, and how a future hacker would try to exploit the robotic system.

Fremont CA: Modern robotics creates awe-inspiring and complicated devices capable of doing repetitive jobs in production lines, transporting materials between sites, and operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Many advantages exist for businesses that replace human labor with robots, including the lack of environmental restrictions, lower-wage prices, and higher productivity.

On the other hand, humans have barely scratched the surface of what robotics can do, and advances in AI could hasten robotic integration into everyday life. From carrying luggage to assisting in the home, robotics could efficiently reduce the need for manual labor while also eliminating the risk of human injury. Moreover, the abolition of labor would prompt society to reconsider what constitutes value and how resources should be divided.

However, because of the difficulties involved, such robotics is still a long way off. Boston Dynamics has built several bipedal robots that function in tightly regulated surroundings, but they are still in their infancy. Even if four-legged robots are functional, they still face problems and challenges that require human intervention to resolve. Even self-driving cars are still science fiction; existing self-driving systems need a human driver to take over in the event of an accident.

Although robotics is still in its nascent stages, engineers should consider the big picture and anticipate how their designs can influence future goods. One needs to look to the Internet of Things market to realize what happens when developers fail to prepare ahead. Engineers in robotics must consider how robotics will impact the future, how they will be employed, and how a future hacker would try to exploit the robotic system.

With more than 20 billion devices connected globally, the IoT market has evolved quickly, accelerating the development of SoCs, microcontrollers, and sensors. However, while this expansion has aided in advancing internet-related technologies, a lack of security foresight has resulted in a relatively insecure ecosystem of devices.

Engineers did not consider how many devices would be developed globally in the early days of IoT, resulting in this lack of foresight. There was also little thought given to how those gadgets would connect to the internet, how those devices would access personal data or the notion that their design was not worth safeguarding. Furthermore, many designers used insecure security techniques such as default passwords, open network connections, and lack of encryption, leaving them highly vulnerable to hacking and abuse.

Robotic devices, for starters, should be regarded as advanced IoT devices because they are virtually always network-driven, have many sensory inputs, and retain data to some extent. As a result, robotic systems should face all of the issues and solutions that IoT devices encounter. This includes adopting secure boot procedures to avoid virus loading, encryption to protect data, and no default passwords to prevent unauthorized access. However, robots also pose the risk of causing harm and doing acts that aren’t always desirable. Future robotic systems may be controlled by two computers, one for remote control and the other for remote control.

The robot is controlled by the remote control computer when it is in regular operation. Nonetheless, the second isolated computer monitors these commands for potentially dangerous behavior, such as injuring humans or accessing prohibited locations. It can override the primary computer and safely shut down the robot if any detections are made. Overall, engineers will need to think about how their robotic systems will be used in the future, what opportunities they will provide, and how to best defend themselves from future threats.

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