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May 28, 2020 Jeremy Boren

Manufacturers Go Remote, PPG Coatings, C-19 Ransomware

Majority of Manufacturers Operate During COVID-19 Crisis

Source: Pixabay

A new survey from the National Association of Manufacturers found that 67 percent of manufacturers kept operating during the COVID-19 crisis during the second fiscal quarter, and only about 32 percent temporarily halted operations.

It’s a bit of a silver-lining in an otherwise very mixed outlook for the sector, which mirrors many other parts of the economy.

Still, manufacturers says they’re quickly looking for ways to adapt to the new challenges revealed by COVID-19.

“Almost 77% of manufacturers said that they were reevaluating what work could be done remotely where possible,” NAM reported.

“This is a notable finding given the difficulties that many manufacturers would 3 face in moving tasks away from the shop floor. Yet it speaks to the need to rethink operations. In fact, two-thirds of respondents said that the COVID-19 outbreak will likely force them to reengineer the production process or operations with ‘social distancing’ in mind.”

Find the full survey results here.

Simplify Work Orders using SCADA

Source: WEAT

The Water Environment Association of Texas will host GrayMatter’s Aaron Cromer and Rich Dreher on June 3 for a webinar presentation about how to Make SCADA Data Work for You.

“A critical component is leveraging the data that you already have. SCADA is available to help define operating parameters, set operational guidelines and even drive the responses needed.”

Aaron and Rich will discuss how to improve training, enhance compliance reporting and automate work order creation, among other topics.

Sign up to join the event on WEAT’s web page.

emPOWERUP.Virtual Coming up in June

Don’t forget, GrayMatter’s next emPOWERUP Virtual event is set for June 23.

Check out GrayMatter’s Training and Events page to sign up and for updates about future virtual events this summer.

PPG Coatings On Frontline of Global Coronavirus Response

Source: Pexel

Coatings often go unnoticed, but they’re critical to allowing technologies to function properly and to protecting medical personnel, PPG Chairman CEO Michael McGarry told Coatings World in a new interview.

PPG’s coatings are being used to inhibit the spread of infectious disease on life-saving equipment including ventilators and vital-sign monitors in hospitals and on equipment at drive-by coronavirus testing facilities, McGarry said.

“Specifically, PPG and DuraPaint, an applicator of liquid spray coatings, recently worked together to provide bed dividers that were paramount in the construction of the Joseph Brant Hospital pop-up, a 93-bed pandemic response unit in Burlington, Ontario.”

Find the full Q&A interview here.

Ransomware Impersonates Italian COVID-19 Contact-Trace App

A ransomware strain dubbed “[F]Unicorn” is targeting people trying to download Immuni, a coronavirus contact-tracing app selected by the Italian government to help monitor and control the spread of the virus, according to the Computer Emergency Response Team, as reported by ThreatPost

There’s been a long-running debate within the cybersecurity community about whether to pay ransomware perpetrators in the hopes that, in exchange, they will unlock the encrypted files.

Perhaps this latest example can help inform the debate as to whether someone capable of disrupting the fight against a global pandemic would be willing to keep their word once they’ve been paid.

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Jeremy Boren

Jeremy is GrayMatter's Brand Manager and the author of TechHub and the emPOWERUP Podcast. He writes about digital solutions, trends and culture in the world of operational technology. Jeremy's background is in daily journalism. He has a passion for storytelling and enjoys highlighting the technologies and professionals taking on complex challenges in manufacturing, energy, cybersecurity and infrastructure.