August 21, 2020

New Ways to Improve Industrial Cybersecurity (IIoT)

Security and cyber-attack prevention are very real concerns in the industrial sector, especially as more machinery and equipment becomes connected to take advantage of IIoT. We highlight what leads to these security issues, and how to overcome them in this blog as well as our upcoming webinar, “A Better Approach to IIoT Security.”


New Ways to Improve Industrial Cybersecurity

Register now for our joint webinar with TransCOR, “A Better Approach to IIoT Security,” on September 15 at 11:00 a.m. ET.


There are so many benefits to IoT devices (IIoT) in the industrial sector. This powerful capability enables machine-to-machine communication (M2M), machine learning, powerful data analytics, predictive maintenance, and more—all to improve business decision making. When successful, IIoT can lead to unprecedented levels of productivity, efficiency, and performance. 

In manufacturing and other industrial companies, IIoT examples include sensors and monitors, industrial controls, inventory scanners, building automation, HVAC systems, building security systems, and much more.


Utilities rely on IoT devices, too, especially related to their use of security control and data acquisition (SCADA) and industrial control systems (ICS), and programmable logic controllers (PLCs). This also includes remote sensors and monitors, intelligent meters, physical security access, video cameras, and other legacy OS systems. 


Overall, IoT (which includes IIoT as a subset) is one of the fastest-growing technologies as industrial organizations look to use them for maximum business value. New research from Business Insider Intelligence estimates that there will be more than 41 billion IoT devices deployed by 2027, up from approximately 8 billion in 2019. 

Related resource: To learn more about IoT security challenges and how to overcome them, download our Securing IoT Devices ebook now.


Security risks

Security and cyber-attack prevention are very real concerns in the industrial sector, especially as more machinery and equipment becomes connected to take advantage of IIoT as well as data analytics, predictive maintenance, and other innovations. 

For example, oil and gas companies are still the primary sources of energy for industrialized and developing economies of the world, making them an extremely attractive target for growing global terrorism and cyber-attacks. This includes threats to every part of the entire supply chain, including oil wells, refineries, pipelines, and transportation.


Related resource: For even more insights, register for our upcoming webinar (presented with TransCOR), “A Better Approach to IIoT Security” (September 15 at 11:00 a.m. ET). 


The use of IIoT devices contributes to increased risk. For example, the sheer volume of IIoT devices that exist within industrial facilities lead to a huge potential attack surface. Additionally, the overall age of legacy systems and components within critical infrastructure make it difficult to apply software patches or other cyber-security tools. 

Yet failure is simply not an option, especially when it comes to important infrastructure, such as power grids, distributed generation, pipelines, and water supply systems, where downtime can be expensive and even catastrophic. 

Clearly, industrial environments using the increasing number of IoT devices must consider their overall security risks, as well as the unique IoT-based challenges in order to do all they can to secure their environments. Yet this is extremely challenging, for a number of reasons.

First, consider that most network endpoints are deployed with endpoint detection and response (EDR) software applications. EDR solutions can be extremely effective at protecting most endpoints from virus infection and detecting additional threats or unknown issues.

Yet unlike other endpoints, many IoT devices can’t support add-on security applications since they tend to be “closed” devices that can’t be altered. Even if they could, they are usually limited in terms of processing power and memory, since they’ve been optimized for cost performance and battery life—clearly a conflict with power- and memory-intensive EDR applications.

All of this adds up to two real industrial IoT security challenges: 

  1. How can IT or security teams accurately and efficiently identify, monitor, and manage all of them in order to make the right decisions on what other applications, systems, and devices they are allowed to communicate with? 
  2. Then, how can they make sure that, if they are breached, attackers do no harm to the rest of the organization?


Related resource: For even more insights, register for our upcoming webinar (presented with TransCOR), “A Better Approach to IIoT Security” (September 15 at 11:00 a.m. ET). 


To learn more about these IIoT-related security concerns, and how to address them, register now for an ARIA Cybersecurity-TransCOR webinar,  “A Better Approach to IIoT Security” (September 15 at 11:00 a.m. ET). 

During this webinar, we’ll highlight ways new solutions can secure IIoT devices, including sensors, SCADA, AMI backhaul, AMR, asset tracking devices, substation monitoring, and so much more. You’ll also have the chance to see how the ARIA Advanced Detection and Response (ADR) and ARIA Packet Intelligence (PI) application deliver threat detection and response that overcomes the security challenges posed by IIoT devices.


  • The ARIA ADR solution is a single platform approach for enterprise-wide automated threat detection and containment. It provides complete visibility into every corner of the network, where other security solutions are limited or completely blind. This heightened network visibility is critical to find the most harmful threats faster and earlier in the attack lifecycle before significant damage can be done.


  • The ARIA PI application is integrated with the ARIA ADR solution, yet it can also run independently to improve the performance and effectiveness of existing security tools like SIEMs or SOARs. The application deploys transparently in the network and allows all IoT devices to be detected and monitored by looking through the network data as it flows through each device.


You’ll also have the chance to hear how TransCOR  is assisting utilities with remote monitoring using 4G LTE, CBRS, and LPWA while preparing for 5G.  TransCOR provides the hardware for these critical wireless networks along with support and consultation on antennas for optimal RF reception.

We hope this information is helpful to understand IIoT security concerns, and we also hope you’ll attend our upcoming webinar, “A Better Approach to IIoT Security” (September 15 at 11:00 a.m. ET).  


About ARIA Cybersecurity Solutions

ARIA Cybersecurity Solutions recognizes that better, stronger, more effective cybersecurity starts with a smarter approach. Our solutions provide new ways to monitor all internal network traffic, while capturing and feeding the right data to existing security tools to improve threat detection and surgically disrupt intrusions. Customers in a range of industries rely on our solutions each and every day to accelerate incident response, automate breach detection, and protect their most critical assets and applications. With a proven track record supporting the Department of Defense and many intelligence agencies in their war on terror, and an award-winning portfolio of security solutions, ARIA Cybersecurity Solutions is committed to leading the way in cybersecurity success.


About TransCOR

TransCOR develops and integrates Custom Rugged Mobile Computer Solutions for reliable data retrieval, communications and storage in extreme environments. We help our customers assess their specific mobile computing needs and develop systems with the right software, accessories, service and expertise to build complete solutions. TransCOR further enhances rugged mobile computing installation and implementation with rugged mounts, modems, printers and peripherals that match the capabilities of comprehensive desktop systems. 

Tags: cyber attack, data breach, cybersecurity, IoT