What are the risks – and solutions – for each part of the network?
Setting up an energy information system (EIS) necessarily involves the use of sensors (often wireless), hubs (also known as gateways or access points, depending on the technology) and a variety of servers… not to mention the software, such as telecom protocols, data control, cloud and visualisation software. All of the above can prove to be cybersecurity loopholes that leave businesses exposed to hacking (data theft, tampering with information) and attacks (denial of service, ransomware* and other malware).
“As factories become increasingly digital, they have to accept the associated cybersecurity constraints. Even if an EIS is not hackers’ prime target, it can be a way of gaining access to other company information systems. It therefore needs solid protection. Fortunately, the appropriate best practices and solutions are already known and used in the IT world: they just have to be adapted to the industrial world,” says Mickael Ngo, subject-matter expert and Solutions Engineer at Blu.e by ENGIE.
Cybersecurity: How reduce the risks?
| Here are a few ground rules:
- Train the teams with regard to passwords, procedures, etc.;
- Maintain tight physical security at your facility with blanket access control;
- Control specific access to electrical cabinets, PLCs, etc.;
- Use wired networks wherever possible and minimise the amount of sensitive information sent over wireless networks;
- Ban uploads to the EIS;
- Isolate the EIS network’s industrial instrumentation and control system.
*Companies have to pay a ransom in exchange for the encryption key to recover their data.
To go further
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