Identifying Cyber Risks in the Process Industry

Industrial Control Systems (ICS) are prone to cyber-attacks, warn DEKRA experts. Cyber defense measures usually focus on computers, IT networks and data highway, Process control and ICS is often a little-noticed gateway for attacks. If these control systems are not secure, the process industry in particular could face huge losses. So DEKRA experts advise systematic security assessments using IEC62443 standards for Cyber safety in process control (ICS).

Cyber-attacks on ICS can result in accidents the consequences of which extend far beyond financial losses. Aside from direct health hazards for staff and local residents, there is also the risk of long-term damage to the environment.

To prevent attacks via industrial control systems, the plant operator should systematically assess the situation, advises DEKRA: Have all the weak spots been identified? Are the biggest consequences of accidents common knowledge? Are there security features in place that can prevent external access? Are there security barriers in place that function independently? Is the EHS business area well-equipped?

The DEKRA CyberSafePS solution has been designed to identify cyber security risk to a process plant. Based on an analysis of the major accident hazards, the assessment evaluates the protective measures and barriers in place – the objective being to achieve cyber security via a series of systems and barriers that function independently of each other. DEKRA CyberSafePS is implemented by industry experts from DEKRA UK.

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