U.S. Water Utility Rupture and ICS Cyber Security Lessons Acquired

Industrial control systems (ICS) are the workhorses of our world, and becoming more internet-connected, more virtualized in most cases, and remotely more accessible by the day. Gartner Research indicates 5.5 million devices were added per day in 2016, a pace that excellerates to an estimated 21+ billion internet-connected “things” running our world by 2020.

Security experts worry that the increase dependence on internet-connected devices is outpacing our ability to seal them. This is especially true within industrial and critical infrastructure because cyber threats could result in physical disruption, loss of availability and even risk to public safety.

Many ICS professionals continue to feel that the actual danger to plant operations and industrial automation are minimal given highly purpose-built industrial equipment, specialized communications protocols, air gaps and unique automation systems and processes. Unfortunately, that’s not what the data shows.

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