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Most recent posts by "Heather MacKenzie"

Cyber Threats Increase for U.S. Critical Infrastructure
Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on June 26, 2012

Did Iran really detect a planned "massive cyber attack" against its nuclear facilities, as reported by Reuters last week? And, have they really “taken [the] necessary measures” to contain it? Or has their posturing been affected by the revelations in “Confront and Conceal: Obama’s Secret Wars and the Surprising Use of American Power” (Confront and Conceal), the new book by the New York Times writer David E. Sanger. Furthermore, what does this have to do with ICS and SCADA Security?

In a recent blog (Stuxnet Warfare – The Gloves are Off) we discussed Mr. Sanger's book. At that time, we noted that Mr. Sanger’s statements that the U.S. and Israel were behind Stuxnet “made it difficult for the U.S. Administration to deny it was behind the Stuxnet attacks”. Indeed the Reuters article seems to treat the attribution of Stuxnet to the U.S. and Israel as fact, indicating the impact of Sanger’s disclosures on how the world is now interpreting sophisticated advanced persistent threats such as Stuxnet and Flame.


SCADA Security Demystified in 5 Short Videos
Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on August 02, 2012

Engineers as well as IT staff in the process control and SCADA industries have varying levels of knowledge about industrial cyber security. We come across this regularly when talking to people at industry events or speaking with customers or partners. To help you, no matter where you are in the learning curve, we have recently released a five-part video series.


ISSSource Explains Why Security is a Mindset at Belden Design Seminar
Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on October 08, 2012

For those of us passionate about industrial security it is great to see it being integrated into networking training as it was at the Belden Industrial Ethernet Infrastructure Design Seminar held near Chicago earlier this week.

At this event end users, Systems Integrators and channel partners learnt about industrial Ethernet networking by attending a wide range of lectures and hands-on labs. There were several sessions and labs on industrial security, and the luncheon speakers on each of the first two days focused on security.

Greg Hale, the Editor and Founder of (a publication we recommend) spoke yesterday and he brought forward a number of interesting points on the cost of cyberattacks, the need for employee training and awareness, and vigilance.


Shamoon: Malicious Malware Harms 30,000+ Computers
Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on October 29, 2012

Ed. Note: This is a significant update to an article first published on Sept 25, 2012. The original article is available as a download in Related Links.

The most destructive post-Stuxnet discovery of advanced threats is a malicious malware known as Shamoon. Like Stuxnet, Duqu and Flame, it targeted energy companies in the Middle East, this time Saudi Aramco, Qatar's RasGas and likely other oil and gas concerns in the region. It is a new species however, because it did not disrupt an industrial process as Stuxnet did, nor did it stealthily steal business information as Flame and Duqu did. Instead it removed and overwrote the information on the hard drives of 30,000 to 55,000 (yes, those numbers are correct!) workstations of Saudi Aramco (and who knows how many more at other firms).


Why Industrial Networks are Different than IT Networks (and What to do About It)
Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on November 05, 2012

Previously we looked at the question of 'Why are PLCs so insecure?' Today we are going to come at SCADA security from another angle, which is 'Why is securing Industrial Networks different than securing IT Networks?'We will also look at three ways to address these differences.

Recently I attended the Belden Industrial Ethernet Infrastructure Design Seminar and participated in an excellent session by Mark Cooksley, product manager for network management in Belden’s Hirschmann brand, called 'Introduction to Network Security'. It did a great job of explaining why Industrial Control Systems (ICS) are easy to attack, and it also explained high level solutions for securing them.


Top SCADA Security Topics in 2012
Blog Category: Industrial Security

Posted by: on January 10, 2013

Google gave interviews over the holidays discussing the top searches done by people in various countries in 2012 (Google Zeitgeist 2012). “Zeitgeist” is “spirit of the age or spirit of the time” and it is interesting to see that for the U.S. the top search for the year was for Whitney Houston, while in Germany it was for EM12 (European football championships) and in Australia it was for Gangnam Style. In a quick review only Canada and Australia included most searched categories for beer, with Molson topping the list in Canada and XXXX (pronounced four X) topping the list in Australia.

I thought I would apply the zeitgeist idea to SCADA security topics, and using our own blog statistics (a limited view of the industry I admit, but the only one I have the data for), have determined the following list of hot topics for the year.


Automotive Manufacturer Adopts Industrial Ethernet Infrastructure
Blog Category: Industrial Ethernet

Posted by: on April 26, 2013

As industrial manufacturers and operators continually work to be globally competitive, one area they look at for cost and efficiency savings is network infrastructure. The magnitude of the change happening with industrial infrastructure is very large -- and the opportunity to play a small part in this change is one reason I have recently moved from our Tofino Security brand to the Industrial IT group.


Safety, Security, & Reliability are Key for Offshore Operations
Blog Category: Industrial Ethernet

Posted by: on May 02, 2013

Keeping operations running at target production rates is the goal of many of our customers. The cost of downtime is particularly expensive if you are operating an offshore oil and gas rig. Next week the energy professionals who do that remarkable work are gathering in Houston for the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC).


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