Home WiFi: The Next Battleground for Service Providers:

Part Five: Intelligent Security Protection

This article is part five in a five-part series on the emerging new battle ground for Service Providers; home WiFi.  This series examines the critical importance of home WiFi in product strategic planning and how it is transforming our business.  Please follow us on LinkedIn to get every article in the series.

Subscriber trust is critical, so if providing an all-encompassing security solution isn’t at the top of your priority list as a service provider, you’re risking your subscriber’s trust and loyalty.  Service providers are in a unique position to play an important role in their consumer’s connectivity, so where security is concerned, subscribers lean on and trust their providers to provide solutions.

The Very Real Issue of Cyber Threats

The statistics on cyber threats and security are alarming. According to a study by the University of Maryland, cyber attacks occur 2,244 times per day. These attacks come from a variety of sources and target your subscribers using these four common platforms:

  • IoT and Connected Devices – Connected devices are now a household staple. Research firm, Parks Associates, found that 71% of US broadband households own a connected device. Unfortunately, IoT devices also have flaws that make them a common target for cyber threats. IoT devices are prone to malware and ransomware attacks that can cripple the entire home network and all the devices connected to it. IoT device security is a known vulnerability, making it easier for hackers to target.
  • Email – Email and phishing attacks are among the most common cybercrimes. Statistics suggest that up to 92% of malware is delivered over email. 37% of malicious email attachments are “.doc” and “.dot” files. “.exe” files and represent 19.5% of malicious email attachments. Once opened, these attachments can access the recipient’s entire home network and connected devices to cause a major security breach and expose sensitive data.
  • Apps – All those fun and helpful apps are great, but unfortunately not all apps are created with fun and helpful intentions. According to a study by Positive Technologies, 43% of mobile devices have potentially harmful, high-security risk apps installed, with 89% of vulnerabilities exploited using malware. A harmful app can create security concerns for your subscribers who use their devices for mobile banking, online shopping, or other activities that involve using personal data.
  • Web browsing – People have been browsing the web for more than 20 years. Despite the longevity of web browsing, it is still a common cause for security breaches. Symantec found that 1 in 13 web searches leads to malware or a malicious website. 60% of those websites are related to spam.

The Economic Value of Subscriber Trust

Subscribers are inundated with options for who they choose as an Internet service provider.  Trust plays a key role in the subscriber/provider relationship and can ultimately make or break a subscriber contract with their provider.  As a service provider, there is value in the trust between the subscriber and yourself.  You have everything to gain by being the provider that subscribers describe as trustworthy and set yourself apart from your competitor. In the race for customer trust, you can provide your customers with peace of mind, knowing their provider is prioritizing their security by offering advanced security solutions. As a result, providers can expect lower churn rates.  By addressing your subscribers’ home network security needs, service providers can reduce churn, improve their customer satisfaction ratings, and establish themselves as a trusted brand. The solution is as simple as providing subscribers with a tool that bridges the gap between provider and subscriber. That tool is Optim Managed Assurance Platform.

The Strategic  Importance of Centrally-located Intelligent Security

Smart security solutions start with the home Wi-Fi network. By establishing a secured home Wi-Fi environment, service providers can create an umbrella of security to protect their subscribers’ home networks and connected devices.  Rather than putting the responsibility of security on the subscriber with “add-on” services, service providers can gain subscriber trust by offering an all-in-one security solution. Optim is designed with the subscriber and service provider in mind, offering peace-of-mind protection for the entire home network and all the devices connected to it. Optim security is powered by F-Secure to create an umbrella of security over the entire network, including networking components like routers, gateways and even extends to the devices connected to the network. That means not only are the subscribers devices protected, but your CPE investments as a Service Provider are also covered. Optim uses AI and machine learning to pinpoint potential security threats, quarantine the infected device, and automatically notify the subscriber and service provider for a rapid resolution. In some cases, Optim can even pro-actively self-heal network issues based on historical and current data.

Cyber security is a constantly evolving area of networking, so it is important that the security tools offered to subscribers are agile and up to date. With Optim’s cloud-based architecture, service providers can deploy value-added security services efficiently, without the risk of impacting other networking elements and preventing lapses in security services to the subscriber. Optim’s modular and configurable design gives the service provider flexibility to offer tailored security and privacy protection for the subscriber. This feature is especially important as product lifecycles launch and sunset, a process that typically creates transitional pain points for the service provider. Intelligent solutions like Optim ease the sunsetting of products and smoothly introduces new products.

The Race for Consumer Trust

Service providers have the opportunity to implement a holistic solution that not only secures IoT devices but creates an advanced security umbrella over the entire Wi-Fi network. Optim’s solution is viable across both complex and basic home Wi-Fi networks and offers new value to existing services. Optim Managed Service Assurance Platform is a managed Wi-Fi solution that builds on the existing subscriber and provider relationship, and can provide security protection for all IoT connected devices via Optim’s Cloud and Cloud Agent.

Offering smarter security solutions is a long-term investment. As new connected technologies emerge, subscribers grow more concerned about their cyber security and privacy. Including Optim in your cyber security strategy provides peace-of-mind to the subscribers while establishing your service as a trustworthy option. Since it’s impossible to eliminate hackers and cyber criminals, let Optim’s intelligent security solutions safeguard your subscribers and your investments.

In case you missed Part One, Part Two, Part Three or Part Four of our series, we have provided the links.

Optim has been deployed to over 5 million homes as the first managed Wi-Fi and service level platform. To learn more about Optim’s top of the line intelligent security services, contact us today.

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