How can companies actively secure industrial environments?

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At present, sophisticated operations technology (OT) environments possess a large attack surface with multiple attack vectors. In fact, a whitepaper from Indegy suggests that the likelihood of a company without coverage suffering from an attack is huge.

The industrial threat

As Indegy notes, the IT infrastructure ensured "complete visibility, security and control" up until recently. However, the increased adoption of IIoT has meant that OT "has quickly caught up as a lightning rod for new attacks and increased security concerns." Traditionally, OT systems are unable to address modern threats due to their segregation and isolation. For example, recently hackers have changed from "rogue individuals to systematic programs launched by well-funded and highly motivated organisations and countries." Unfortunately, networking monitoring is insufficient when it comes to tackling this relatively new security threat. As a result, it is essential to gain visibility into the "entire industrial control system (ICS) environment."

Progressing beyond passive monitoring

Within ICS environments, suspicious behaviours and activities exist on devices and the actual network itself. Moreover, a device can remain infected for days, weeks, or months if network monitoring misses an attack. As Indegy points out, network monitoring provides operators with just 50% visibility and coverage across the entire OT environment. It is therefore integral that an ICS security solution addresses the threats that exist on the network and on devices. Progression beyond passive network monitoring is absolutely vital to achieving complete visibility, security, and control. According to Indgedy, this involves incorporating "Device Integrity security" in order to enhance traditional network monitoring.

Achieving complete visibility, security, and control

Alone, networking monitoring is an insufficient and ineffective way to address modern cyberattacks. However, incorporating a solution that tackles network based attacks and active device checking provides visibility into the entire industrial OT system. Indegy Device Integrity enhances network monitoring by collecting information that is impossible to find on the network itself. In addition to this, it provides essential context for security alerts. Querying also cuts down on maintenance costs as it eliminates the need to monitor every switch in the organisation. When performed correctly, device checking is "the only way to ensure complete visibility, security and control for your OT network both for today and also to scale into the future."

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