August 2nd 2021

The IoT Security Foundation announced today that Sarb Sembhi, CTO of Virtually Informed, has joined its Executive Steering Board (ESB).

Sarb has been a cybersecurity professional for over 20 years and an active member of IoTSF since 2018 where he has successfully helped establish and co-chair the Smart Built Environment Working Group (‘SBE-WG’ – originally named the Smart Buildings WG). The group has a charter to ‘establish a set of guidance materials and tools to help each of the building system(s) stakeholder groups to understand, specify, procure, install/integrate, validate, operate and maintain IoT systems securely in buildings throughout the working life.’

The SBE-WG published its first white paper titled Can You Trust Your Smart Building in 2019 with its work represented at the IoTSF’s annual conference and the regular members’ Plenary meetings since that time – updating interested parties as to the group’s progress and findings. The SBE-WG has also been working on several best practice and guidance documents with group members with a number due for publication this year (see below for more details).

The appointment to the ESB recognises not only Sarb’s leadership but also the increasing strategic importance of the SBE-WG’s work within IoTSF. Sarb will continue to be active within the group and provide a direct link of the groups plans to the ESB.

John Moor, IoTSF Managing Director said:

“We’re delighted to welcome Sarb to the ESB. Through his joint leadership and the dedication of the members of the Smart Built Environment Working Group we have been able to better understand the unique IoT security challenges and stakeholder groups. Sarb has been facilitating those conversations, distilling the requirements and making sure we can communicate to both a non-technical and technical audience. As a result, IoTSF is on the verge of announcing a number of publications to help make it safe to connect in the context of smart buildings.”

Sarb Sembhi said:

“Securing the smart built infrastructure for the digital age is critical right now. Our group’s work has been growing and gathering pace throughout the pandemic and is targeted towards practitioners and risk managers who want to make a difference to the cyber security of their environments but may struggle to know where to start. Our approach has been to focus on stakeholders who we considered the most impactful and willing to take up the challenge ahead for the transformation of the built environment.”

The following stakeholder documents are planned for publication in Q4 2021:

  • Guidance for Building Owners.
  • Guidance for Facilities Managers.
  • Guidance for Manufacturers.

Additionally, guidance for Systems Integrators is expected to follow in 2022.

Each document set consists of a guidance document and a recommendations document, so that those stakeholders who are familiar with the field can go straight to the recommendations, but those who need to understand the issues further are able to use the guidance first.

Beyond publication, the SBE-WG members will be working hard to promote awareness of the issues covered in these guidance documents through articles, blogs, and webinars, where we aim to engage with practitioners.

Sembhi added “Every country in the world has been investing in Smart Buildings, as the next wave of innovation in living and working begins to impact the lives of people all around the world. Ensuring that they are secure, whether they be offices, shopping malls, public stadiums, transportation hubs or any other type of building will give people greater benefits by way of reduced costs, better utilisation and lower energy consumption. As members of the WG, we too are citizens of cities and users of these buildings, we want to ensure that they are safe and secure for all who visit and use them.”

How do you find out more or join in?

Do you have an interest in IoT cybersecurity in the connected places / smart built environment / smart cities domain?

Why not join forces with IoTSF and the SBE-WG?
Click here to register your interest

Sarb Sembhi

“Securing the smart built infrastructure for the digital age is critical right now.”

Sarb Sembhi CISM, is the CTO for Virtually Informed and a CISO for AirEye, a technology company providing visibility, control and protection to enterprise Airspace.

See more about Sarb and the ESB