Industrial cyber security and control systems - Protection against cyber threats 

By C Pool, Proconics


Published in:

Electricity + Control, September 2015 (pages 4 – 9)

Enquiries: Email cobus.pool@proconics.co.za


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In the wake of the Stuxnet shock, many thought the concept of attacking a country or business through its control and automation systems was a new and novel idea. The fact is that this has been an option and high level concern since the late 1980s and it took something as drastic as Stuxnet to create awareness of the problem. This awareness and enthusiasm has since mellowed in the face of financial pressure in the aftermath the global economic recovery. After all it is the responsibility of the government to ensure that the regulatory framework for protection and compliance is in place. Unfortunately, as we will see, this is not the case and when facing new threats like Duqu and Flame, it is up to companies to protect themselves.

Internationally, regulatory frameworks are being strengthened and increased measures are being put in place to combat cyber intrusions and attacks against critical infrastructure control systems. Unfortunately it is still being seen as a rear guard action as hackers are running ahead of protection measures. Mainly because they have had such a massive head start.

 

Take note

  • With networking being the order of the day, most companies are exposed to possible cyber attacks.
  • Cyber security threats include both intentional and unintended breaches.
  • Cyber crime must be guarded against – not just by policy makers, but also by every company.