Our everyday life is based on operational technology (OT). Without the manufacturing industry and critical infrastructure, such as energy providers, our everyday life as we know it would not be possible. Growing interconnectedness and digitalization are vastly increasing the attack surface in manufacturing and critical infrastructure.
Growing interconnectedness and increasingly digitalized manufacturing as a challenge for OT security
Regulatory requirements, such as the NIS Directive and the BSI KRITIS Regulation, are on the rise and are putting pressure on operators of industrial plants and critical infrastructure. The EU Cyber Resilience Act takes this a step further by also making component manufacturers and integrators responsible for security. Systems can only be secure if the individual components also meet security requirements. A lack of OT security knowledge is becoming more and more of a problem here.
Managing new threats with enough security professionals
A study by Fortinet surveyed more than 1,000 IT decision-makers worldwide. 80% of the companies questioned have been affected by at least one security breach due to a lack of knowledge and/or awareness of cybersecurity.
Cybersecurity and also OT security is often seen as a merely technical challenge. The know-how aspect has been put on the back seat. However, many breaches and damages are the result of the Cybersecurity Skills Gap. Companies often have technical security solutions in place that are not properly integrated into the infrastructure and therefore offer only limited protection. Training is the key to combating the cybersecurity skills gap. The pressing skills gap, especially in the OT and KRITIS sectors, can be improved by training and developing existing technical staff.
- Lack of OT security knowledge is responsible for a large number of damages and breaches ➝ More and more damages and security breaches could be prevented by appropriate OT security knowledge
- Technical security systems only increase the level of security if the configuration, maintenance and monitoring of the environment is carried out by qualified staff.