Security a key factor in LogMeIn’s Internet of Things platform

Remote-access success story LogMeIn is staking its claim on the evolving Internet of Things (IoT) market by launching an IoT-enabling platform that uses LogMeIn’s cloud-based connectivity platform to link and secure nearly any kind of device.

The company’s new Xively Cloud Services is based around a live, platform as a service (PaaS) offering that offers API-based access to real-time messaging, directory services and data services such as a time-series database and analytics.

Designed to scale to support a billion or more non-computer devices, Xively is intended to facilitate machine-to-machine communications at a massive scale, with a consistent messaging interface to simplify the process of interconnecting everything from exercise equipment and industrial sensors to household appliances and lighting equipment.

“We’re seeing a lot of people struggling with how to get these applications and objects talking together,” LogMeIn Asia Pacific vice president Andy Farquharson tells CSO Australia.

“That’s what we’ve been trying to create with Xively. It’s such early days that we don’t know what people want to compromise on, so we want to accept everything, and create a frictionless experience for people. Rio Tinto may be able to afford $540m to build driverless trucks and build its own connectivity layer, but small companies just can’t afford to spend that – so that’s where ordinary people really struggle to build the IoT.”

Given the potential nature and number of devices to be linked to the IoT, operational and data security are crucial elements of the Xively infrastructure. It has been designed with high-granular control over individual data elements, with user-defined controls over which data is shared and with which device. All IoT elements will be linked through LogMeIn’s Gravity Service Cloud, which already supports services including the LogMeIn remote access and Cubby file-storage systems.

“Security controls are really important,” Farquaharson says. “You may like having your alarm linked with your coffee machine so it automatically knows when you’ll be waking up, and having a link with your calendar so it knows which days you’ll be away and travelling – but you don’t want that information going public.”

Having a consistent platform will “make the complex very simple, in a manageable way,” he explains. “Cost has been a prohibitive factor in the past, and the ability to set this up in a secure way – but we’ve already got the cloud infrastructure.”

LogMeIn recently partnered with microprocessor firm ARM to promote an integrated IoT-compatible solution offered to developers as the Xively Jumpstart Kit, which pairs Xively with the ARM mbed platform.

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