Industrial cybersecurity adoption moving slowly

Even though cybersecurity incidents across the globe are increasing, industrial companies are not moving quickly to adopt measures to protect their data and operations according to a report by LNS Research. Three solutions are highlighted.
By Gregory Hale, ISSSource February 4, 2018

Industrial companies are not moving quickly to adopt cybersecurity measures to protect their data and operations, even as attacks have increased around the globe, according to a report by LNS Research.

"Decision-makers are more aware of threats and some progress has been made to address them, but this report reinforces that cybersecurity fundamentals haven’t been adopted by a significant portion of the industrial community," said Jeff Zindel, vice president and general manager, Honeywell Industrial Cyber Security, which sponsored the report.

Zindel added, "In order to take advantage of the tremendous benefits of industrial digital transformation and IIoT, companies must improve their cybersecurity defenses and adapt to the heightened threat landscape now."

The survey, entitled "Putting Industrial Cyber Security at the Top of the CEO Agenda," polled 130 strategic decision makers from industrial companies about their approach to the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), and their use of industrial cybersecurity technologies and practices.

Among the findings were: 

  • More than half of respondents reported working in an industrial facility that already has had a cybersecurity breach.
  • 45% of the responding companies still do not have an accountable enterprise leader for cybersecurity.
  • 37% are monitoring for suspicious behavior.
  • Although most companies are conducting regular risk assessments, 20% are not doing them at all.

The study suggests these three immediate actions for any industrial organization to capture the value of the new technologies:

1. Make industrial cybersecurity part of digital transformation strategies

2. Drive best practice adoption across people, processes and technology, from access controls to risk monitoring, and tap external cyber expertise to fill gaps

3. Focus on empowering leaders and building an organizational structure that breaks down the silos between information technology (IT) and operations technology (OT).

Gregory Hale is the editor and founder of Industrial Safety and Security Source (ISSSource.com), a news and information Website covering safety and security issues in the manufacturing automation sector. This content originally appeared on ISSSource.com. ISSSource is a CFE Media content partner. Edited by Chris Vavra, production editor, CFE Media, cvavra@cfemedia.com.

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