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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on January 13, 2016

The start of a new year is often the time we make decisions to do things differently than in the past. Today I would like to suggest that one of the 2016 decisions you make is to toss out invalid ICS security assumptions and hone in on meaningful improvement for your cyber security defenses.

To make the point, I am going to look at an “old” security approach – air gaps. Those at the forefront of security may have dismissed air gap approaches, but many engineers in the field still consider them valid defense measures.

Let’s look at air gaps as a security control and see why, for anyone concerned about automation network reliability and availability, it’s time to forget them as a method of defense.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on December 16, 2015

The top priority of control professionals is making sure that automation networks are operating reliably and safely. Security in this context involves using Defense in Depth techniques to protect critical control assets and safety systems -- as well as the entire manufacturing, process control or transportation environment.

This broader view of security includes physical security and it is achieved by using a combination of physical barriers and technology systems. New physical security technologies are trending towards IP-based video surveillance and access control systems.

What types of Ethernet switches and which network architectures are best for physical security systems, particularly when operating outdoors?

Understanding the options in this area will help you select or specify surveillance and access control networking equipment that works effectively and efficiently – thereby contributing to high reliability.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on December 02, 2015

Forecasters predict that the Internet of Things (IoT) will increase the number of machines, appliances and devices connected to the Internet from the current five billion to 80 billion by 2020. Greater connectivity means more knowledge, which means increased opportunities – and it all revolves around security.

“Security is one of the key points when we talk to industrial companies,” said John Herold, Belden’s vice president of global industrial marketing during his presentation last month at the Industrial Ethernet Infrastructure Design Seminar. “We have found security is a key entry point. It has to be thought of.”

With the financial impact from IoT expected to reach $11.1 trillion by 2025, what steps should you take today to make sure your industrial network is poised to benefit from the IoT’s brother, the IIoT? Read on to find out.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on November 25, 2015

As a reader of this blog you know that cybersecurity has been increasing in importance in industrial facilities since the discovery of Stuxnet in 2010. Now along comes the IIoT with its increased numbers of connected devices and links to the Internet and business systems.

More IIoT-related entry points to industrial communications infrastructure means more cyber risk. In manufacturing and process control environments this means higher risk to physical devices and processes and the possibility of physical, not just digital, damage.

What does this imply for ICS security going forward? In today’s article we look at 3 trends that Belden sees; read on to learn about these trends.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on November 11, 2015

A proper network design can be the difference between a secure, rugged process that keeps running smoothly or a nightmare that is not reliable. In a manufacturing enterprise, the industrial network is often unnoticed or unappreciated. Yet a poorly designed network can take away from the bottom line.

“Ethernet today is not the same as it was when it was invented 40 years ago,” said Jim Laurita, technical service manager in Belden’s Industrial IT group. His talk “Industrial Ethernet Infrastructure (IEI): Design Best Practices” opened the Belden Design Seminar, held last month near Chicago, IL.

Find out Laurita’s perspective on how industrial Ethernet has evolved and the key components for designing a secure manufacturing or process control network.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on October 28, 2015

One of the best parts of the Belden Design Seminar, held last week in Chicago, was the lively presentation given by two of Belden and Tripwire’s top experts on industrial cybersecurity.

David Meltzer, Chief Research Officer of Tripwire, and Jeff Caldwell, Chief Architect- Security at Belden, teamed up to discuss cybersecurity threats and how to build industrial networks to defend against them.

David and Jeff spoke about the nature of cybersecurity incidents occurring in industrial networks today. They went on to discuss a 1-2-3 approach to securing industrial networks. Find out about this approach and how Belden and Tripwire products contribute to it.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on October 14, 2015

Industrial wireless is being used to improve availability and reduce costs in a wide variety of applications. For example, a large coal preparation facility uses a tablet application for mobile ICS system monitoring and troubleshooting.

An offshore drilling rig company uses it for wireless data collection.

An oil refinery uses it for remote monitoring of its cooling towers, reducing wear and tear on equipment and lowering monitoring expenses.

In this second part of our two-part blog series I take a look at the important industrial wireless security strategy of detecting attacks and anomalies.

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Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on September 30, 2015

Industrial wireless applications are being used more and more by leading manufacturers and operators to improve availability and reduce costs. That sounds great, but before considering it for your facility, you might be wondering how difficult it is to make sure industrial wireless networks are secure.

The good news is that the best practices, technologies and products available now make it straightforward for engineering teams to implement wireless applications securely.

This two-part article explains how a Defense in Depth approach, combined with WLAN protection and detection strategies, work together for secure wireless network design.

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