What is Industrial Cybersecurity?

Since computers were first used in every industry and sector across the US, industrial cybersecurity has become increasingly important. Over the years, this subject area has become ever more complex, especially where automated services are used in critical parts of the infrastructure. 

Every industry from pharmaceuticals to car manufacture uses some form of system that is connected to the digital world. Some couldn’t run without it. With the developing concept of the Internet of Things, where these systems are often connected, cybersecurity has naturally become a constant challenge. 

It’s an area of IT security that has developed and evolved over the years and is now probably unrecognizable from the discipline it was 20 years ago. 

The Challenge of Industrial Cybersecurity

Each industry will have it’s own cybersecurity measures in place as well as those that overlap between different sectors. Because of its complex nature, it can be difficult to get the expertise on board which provides the asset protection that many businesses are now looking for, however.

In many industries, there are cybersecurity processes in place that are easy to understand and implement. There are other processes that are not so clear cut and which require deep level expertise. The major challenge that owners face is getting clear guidelines that can be followed accurately and easily. Even this, however, is not sufficient in the modern industrial cybersecurity landscape. 

Automated systems have complex and a mix of software and hardware challenges present themselves to modern businesses today. Another big challenge is defining the roles and functions of those involved in the supply and maintenance of systems within a particular company. 

  • Who is responsible for producing policies and procedures? 
  • Who handles the integration of a new system with the rest of the business? 
  • What maintenance needs to be carried out to ensure safe and secure function of the systems?

Industrial cybersecurity delivers a constantly evolving ecosystem that requires the right players to be in place at all times.  It presents unique challenges especially in an age where interconnectivity is the norm rather than the exception. And it’s one that industries have to grasp and continue to do something about.