Edge computing is the new wave taking over top industries with no signs of stopping. For those unfamiliar, edge computing is computing that is done near the network in which data is collected, saved, and utilized for real-time analytics and decision making. As companies continue to deploy edge computing technology, IT experts now are challenged to properly implement and update security protection.

Cyber attacks are prevalent in today’s IT climate, increasing in complexity and frequency, making security a top priority for IT professionals. Threats like data breaches and decreased system performance can ultimately affect a company’s bottom line, highlighting the need to implement the appropriate security and operation strategies when deploying edge solutions.

Before implementing complex security systems, it is essential for organizations to keep systems up-to-date – as software is the foundation of edge computing deployments. It is also necessary to keep a plan in place for continuous updates to ensure that applications are not obsolete or outdated.

So, how do you build a security strategy?

The installation of operational technology (OT) security software is a great start for securing the edge. With its ability to appoint protection recourses close to the data point, edge computing makes security programs more effective and decreases the time it takes for programs to register and process security threats. For cases in which IT staff are unable to prevent a breach at endpoint devices (whether that be because of lack of capabilities or resources), OT security software is very valuable and provides companies a level of protection to establish a line of defense.

Prior to deployment, companies must secure their computing solutions in both cyber and physical security aspects, as both can have dangerous impacts on bottom line and cost companies a great deal in damages if not secured correctly. Thankfully, most edge computing plans have physical protection in place, when possible internal risks like human error occur.

Physical security traditionally is thought to be a lower-profile problem when compared to potential massive malware attacks. However, some of the largest industrial security breaches could have been prevented by simply locking a cabinet or USB port, or employing identity control measures to prevent hackers getting access to important connectivity points on a physical device.

For companies to be successful and fully protected, both cyber and physical points of security need to be considered when developing security strategies and the edge.