At the time of this movie, the internet and cell phone networks are all fully developed up to modern times. Although the specific existence of these technologies is not a major plot point, JARVIS and all of Iron Man’s suits are equipped with internet and cellular communications as shown by JARVIS’ ability to pull up online articles and make calls to Happy and Rhodes. Television is used throughout the movie as a way to propogate the messages of the Mandarin.
Tony Stark does not have any patents or protection on any of his technology, at least not addressed in the film. He likely keeps them as trade secrets, storing everything in JARVIS’ database. How he protects all of this is unknown, especially considering JARVIS seems to run independant of any network, continuing to function after Stark’s house is destroyed. This likely is an example of technology yet to be developed, as a network so dispersed would be difficult to keep so secure.
The government was able to trace a call from the Mandarin to a location, although incorrect, this begins to display the dangers of publicly broadcasted messages and their security. Stark later finds the real location of the Mandarin using JARVIS to trace the television signal, a technology that does not yet exist. The statement it makes though is that any signals put into public airspace can never truly be hidden.
The government has access to the Iron Patriot suit, used by James Rhodes as a weapon. Tony Stark works closely with the government and likely still maintains most of the privacy that is associated with his suits. Rhodes seems to be the only one using it and has Stark’s trust, granting him some access to the system.
This movie was made after the age of analog television, so whatever Killian used to inject his message onto public broadcast is beyond current technology. This also applies to Stark’s ability to trace the source of the broadcast with JARVIS. The closest thing we have currently is phone location tracking using triangulation of it’s cellular signal or with GPS capabilities.
Tony Stark has to deal with unreliability in his computers throughout the movie. JARVIS breaks down in his suit after he crashes and Stark has to figure out how to fix the suit. Stark must have some kind of failsafe or backup system in his other suits for JARVIS for it to survive later on in the film. He also works with his robotic arm DUM-E, which is controlled by a not very reliable AI. Stark has to work with its limitation but eventually just gives it a dunce cap.
Although not really practical in regular life, Iron Man uses his various suits to fight autonomously at the end of the movie. They could theoretically be used as remote troops, as he shows their teleoperated capabilities earlier in the movie (to the annoyance of Pepper). Stark’s collection of machines and his sole control of them is similar to the “winner-take-all” society in which one person or only a handful have control of a disproportionate amount of the advancements.