You know what’s worse than having a security vulnerability in your products be exploited in one of the largest cyber attacks in history? Having the government regulate your entire industry, adding bureaucratic oversight to the layers of technical, economic and human challenges that you already had to deal with when trying to get a product to market. That is the shadow that is darkening the door of the IoT industry today.

The most recent attacks have focused on tech news sites and popular services like Netflix and Twitter but those services use the internet and so do many government agencies, critical infrastructure providers, emergency services, etc. That fact has not been lost on many people tasked with protecting the public. Most importantly for IoT product vendors, there are members on capitol hill that are turning their focus to this topic.

I’m not implying that no regulation is preferred; rather than the regulation is better handled by the vendors themselves. The political process is notoriously slow and almost never populated by individuals with relevant backgrounds for deciding policy on hardware and software. However, if the vendors can’t get their houses in order, oversight is required to protect the public.

This is where Sen. Mark Warner, (D-Va.), comes in. He has taken notice of both the attacks and the serious need to address the situation to prevent it worsening. The silver lining is that Senator Warner doesn’t want to get the government involved unless it’s required. He’s stepping in to get things moving but making it clear that he prefers that the industry solve its own security problems. This is the wake-up call for any companies that managed to hit the snooze button after the last IoT botnet attack. Unless you want someone outside of your industry telling you how to do what you do, fix your stuff.