Cisco Blogs

Join the Challenge: Secure the Internet of Things

February 27, 2014 - 5 Comments

We’re connecting more of our world every day through smart, IP-enabled devices ranging from home appliances, healthcare devices, and industrial equipment. These new connected devices are offering new ways to share information and are changing the way we live. This technology transformation is what we call the Internet of Things (IoT) – and it is evolving daily.

Yet, as our connected lives grow and become richer, the need for a new security model becomes even more critical. It requires that we work together as a community to find innovative solutions to make sure that the IoT securely fulfills its potential and preserves the convenience that it represents.

With this in mind, Cisco is launching the Internet of Things Security Grand Challenge. We’re inviting you — the global security community — to propose practical security solutions across the markets being impacted daily by the IoT.

For example, in the healthcare sector, it’s easy to imagine how Internet-connected devices and systems are revolutionizing patient care. In the transportation sector, technologists are already connecting vehicles and their subsystems to the Internet. It is also, unfortunately, too easy to imagine how these world-changing developments could go terribly wrong when attacked or corrupted by bad actors.

The Internet of Things Security Grand Challenge offers visionaries, innovators, and implementers like you the opportunity to define a future of a secure IoT. With the IoT as a significant part of the larger Internet of Everything (IoE) market transition that brings together connected devices with people, processes, and data, it’s even more imperative that we ensure the things we connect are secure.

Here’s the fun part: the Challenge offers up to US$300,000 in prize money, with awards from US$50,000 to US$75,000 for up to six recipients. Winning solutions will be announced and showcased at the Internet of Things World Forum this fall.

A Cisco team of security experts will evaluate proposals based on the following criteria:

  • Feasibility, scalability, performance, and ease-of-use
  • Applicability to address multiple IoT verticals (manufacturing, mass transportation, healthcare, oil and gas, smart grid, etc.)
  • Technical maturity/viability of proposed approach
  • Proposers’ expertise and ability to feasibly create a successful outcome

By working together as a community, we can help to close the security gaps and enjoy the benefits of a safer connected world. Join the challenge.

In an effort to keep conversations fresh, Cisco Blogs closes comments after 60 days. Please visit the Cisco Blogs hub page for the latest content.


  1. This is a great idea, Cisco. For all the excitement in the IoT ecosystem, the issues of security across the stack — from devices, networks, platforms and applications — need realistic emphasis. We need some best-practice, workable security solutions for securing these new IoT deployments. Kudos for creating this Grand Challenge.

  2. Start with enabling HTTPS on your challenge website..

  3. Hi

    Please let me know, the start and end data of this competition. Also, where or to whom do we submit the idea.

    With regards

  4. Looking forward to seeing what comes out of this competition, well done Cisco on getting behind this 🙂