Energy Sector Arming Itself to Fight Cyber Attacks

By CIOReview | Wednesday, July 24, 2019

New technology tools are increasingly available, providing needed protection for the energy sector that is now facing an uptick in cyberattacks.  

FREMONT, CA: With the proliferation of the Internet of Things (IoT) in the energy sector, a broader threat landscape is emerging, leaving critical infrastructure extremely vulnerable to cyberattacks.  Also, the Information Technology (IT) and Operational Technology (OT) systems of the energy sector are increasingly prone to attacks. Addressing cyber risks in the industry is critical not only to energy security but is also vital for a resilient state and economy. It is time for the sector to find new ways to protect itself.

An improved network monitoring and situational awareness platform in the utility and energy sector will add to both asset visibility and performance management. It can help prevent and detect potential incidents before they damage the entire network. Besides, continuous monitoring can also help the sector understand their network architecture and a baseline of normal behavior for more significant threat remediation. With this data and insight obtained from control, systems can better detect when devices deviate from the security baseline. This allows network administrators and OT managers to allocate time and resources to mitigating those critical threats exclusively.

A comprehensive and intelligent network monitoring platform can also afford the energy sector with leveled up productivity and lower risk profiles. The automated incident response allows for the rapid prevention of unauthorized access to systems and networks while enhancing audit compliance to boot.

With IT and OT convergence, there are more security implications to consider than ever before. It is critical for energy sector security teams have situational awareness of the assets and understand their operational risk profile, which means that they need the visibility, control, and flexibility to protect their assets and then the enterprise. With an integrated IT and OT security strategy, unified device visibility and control platform set in place, the energy sector will be well-armed to establish robust cyber resiliency needed to create a safer, efficient and smarter grid.

Managing cyber threat should not stop at the individual or enterprise level. Energy firms can improve their Cyber Security posture by establishing industry standards, exchanging threat intelligence, and testing new technologies.