Machine Safety: Safety and security combined

Some recent reports, cyber attacks have grown by 600% since 2010 costing industry around $400 billion a year impacting productivity, machine uptime and profitability. Machine safety automation also addresses productivity, uptime and profitability. Perhaps “safety” and “security” efforts should combine.

09/16/2014


Cost of reducing cyber security risk needs to be factored into any technology transition. Courtesy: Control EngineeringSome recent reports say cyber attacks have grown by 600% since 2010 costing industry around $400 billion a year impacting productivity, machine uptime and profitability. Machine safety automation also addresses productivity, uptime and profitability. Perhaps “safety” and “security” efforts should combine.

The awareness of security of control systems in manufacturing is slowly growing, yet I believe it still suffers from a lack of identity within industrial facilities. There doesn't seem to be a lot of activity around the understanding of cyber security issues or cyber security best practices? Yet, $400 billion seems like a big number to me!

Over the same years that cyber attacks have grown by 600%, machine safety automation has evolved into integrated control systems, networks, and wireless applications. These machine safety systems also can drive greater productivity, machine uptime and profitability. Therefore, shouldn’t “safety” and “security” efforts combine as a result of business dynamics? In my opinion, the answer is yes because they both can come together physically at the same top level in the control architecture of a machine.

Both of these worlds depend heavily on technology as we just briefly reviewed. And I believe that both worlds are heavily influenced by their separate cultures. However, I see a difference in their development and strength as it relates to their organizational influence capabilities. It seems that safety cultures in industry are significantly better developed and mature compared to security cultures. In addition, and in my experience, safety cultures (for better or worse) have existed in manufacturing for decades. If cyber security cultures existed during this same time I saw them focused at the IT department and human resource department levels but not at the level of machine control systems or factory automation.

Perhaps ultimately it is the availability of smarter technologies that will give organizations the ability to integrate these two worlds, potentially affecting machine productivity, machine uptime and profitability.

I'd be interested in hearing if machine safety and cyber security efforts are integrating in your location. Leave a comment below, please.

Related articles:

Safety and Security enewsletter

Security ranked as a top challenge facing automation

Security as fundamental as safety

Contact: www.jbtitus.com for “Solutions for Machine Safety.”

 

 



Perry , United States, 11/06/14 10:11 AM:

Yes and no. Yes - the merger of safety and security in the top level of the control architecture probably makes good business sense. No - for super critical applications where the compromise of a safety system can lead to serious physical damage to plant equipment, serious damage to the environment, or loss of life, then the increase in attack surface may be completely unacceptable.
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Motor specification guidelines; Understanding multivariable control; Improving a safety instrumented system; 2017 Engineers' Choice Award Winners
Selecting the best controller from several viewpoints; System integrator advice for the IIoT; TSN and real-time Ethernet; Questions to ask when selecting a VFD; Action items for an aging PLC/DCS
Robot advances in connectivity, collaboration, and programming; Advanced process control; Industrial wireless developments; Multiplatform system integration
Motion control advances and solutions can help with machine control, automated control on assembly lines, integration of robotics and automation, and machine safety.
This article collection contains several articles on the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) and how it is transforming manufacturing.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Future of oil and gas projects; Reservoir models; The importance of SCADA to oil and gas
Big Data and bigger solutions; Tablet technologies; SCADA developments
SCADA at the junction, Managing risk through maintenance, Moving at the speed of data
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Jose S. Vasquez, Jr.
Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
click me