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February 15, 2018 Marketing

TechHub: The U.S. Cyber Crisis, Industrial Cyber Security & More News

Q&A: Mitigating Cyber Risk in Manufacturing Digital Transformation

The 2018 Industry 4.0 ThinkTank kicked off the year for industrial transformation in Chicago, bringing together manufacturers and provocative thinkers, industry leaders and experts.

Couldn’t make it to Chicago? No problem.

GrayMatter’s Cyber Practice Lead Scott Christensen brought back his insights to share an exclusive, all-access look at mitigating OT cyber risk in this Q&A after serving as a panel member.

Q: What was the best success story you have?

The best one I have is a conversation with a manufacturer who said they’re going to re-architect their systems and how they’re going to go about cyber OT.

Typically, when it comes to OT cyber strategy, it’s a battle of kingdoms between IT teams and production teams. No one is sure who owns cyber in the production world, creating a lack of convergence on what the best methodology is for going forward in cyber security.

Want to learn more? Take a look at the GrayMatter Cyber Security Guide for Operational Technology.

The manufacturer’s new way of going forward would involve a team made of both cyber IT security experts and production members, such as plant managers, operational engineers or the COO.

This brings the barriers down of who has ownership of cyber production within the network, creating a team that can work together to mitigate risks.

Take advantage of Scott’s insights — check out the rest of the Q&A.

Cyber Security Named Biggest U.S. Threat at Senate Intelligence Committee

The top intelligence agencies in the U.S. have pushed aside terrorism as the top national security threat. The thing to take its place? Cyber security.

The leaders of those agencies testified before the Senate Intelligent Committee this week during its annual “Worldwide Threats” hearing, according to CNet.

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats said that cyber security is his “greatest concern” and “top priority,” in his opening statement. This puts it ahead of threats like terrorism and weapons of mass destruction.

This declaration comes after a long year of industrial cyber attacks like WannaCry ransomware, where critical infrastructures and industrial companies were put at risk around the world.

Sen. Richard Burr, the committee’s chairman, directed questions regarding cyber security and protecting critical US infrastructure, from computers to energy supply, at NSA Director Michael Rogers.

cyber security

Sens. Richard Burr (center) and Mark Warner (left) are worried about cybersecurity. Source: Alex Wong / Getty Images

“Cyber is clearly the most challenging threat vector this country faces,” Burr said. “It’s also one of the most concerning, given how many aspects of our daily lives can be disrupted by a well-planned, well-executed cyber attack.

Not sure if your operational technology is locked down? Get some advice from our cyber expert.

Rogers responded by discussing issues surrounding IoT devices, and the need for secure settings, to prevent major cyber attacks.

“If you think the problem is challenging now, just wait. It’s going to get much, much worse,” Rogers said.

The Center of Industry 4.0

One in five power plants will become digital plants by 2025 — a short seven years from now. The industrial sector is all aboard when it comes to industry 4.0, according to Susan Peterson, Digital Lead for APP Power Generation & Water, in IIoT World.

“Connected devices will enable new service models. Despite extensive automation, utilities will continue to rely on human collaboration and expertise,” said Peterson.

For those in power and water industries, two sectors rapidly adapting to digital transformation, focusing on the user experience and how digital will change how the operator works is an important aspect.

Helping operators grow and accelerate real gains from Industrial IoT is the key to new business models, creating a new way of working.

Yet, despite the enthusiasm for digitization in utilities, only 8% of utility operations are digitally mature.

This means there are still abundant opportunities within the sector, who’s worth is proven by small, tangible wins where value can be scaled.

Learn more about becoming a digital utility and creating intelligent systems.

Rather than being a deterrent, Peterson sees automation as an enabler. Power generation, for example, is one of the most automated industries today. We are at the beginning of a massive transformation in the power generation industry over the next few years.

It’d predicted that by 2019 — one year from now — 25% of the top 100 utilities will cut their IT costs by at least 30% by migrating IT infrastructure into the public cloud.

By 2020, 25% of utilities will incorporate performance management investments with sensor data to improve asset efficiency and reduce maintenance costs.

Embracing data and analytics as the driving force of digital transformation is the key to making businesses thrive. Interested in hearing more?

Check out our eBook for a better in-depth view on deciphering digital priorities and taking the first steps.


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