The First Step to Defend Against Cyber Attacks: Effective OT Asset Management

  • Conference Program
  • Cybersecurity
  • April 9, 2019
  • 1:15 pm - 2:00 pm

Today’s automation systems are incredibly complex, with thousands of measurements, integrated applications, and more interdependency than ever before. The primary mechanism for continuous improvement to the process and operations within an industrial facility consists of daily configuration changes on a wide range of multi-vendor automation systems. The vast majority of the changes are unmanaged and undocumented, which makes determining what authorized or unauthorized changes occurred almost impossible. This leaves industrial facilities vulnerable to cyberattacks from external threat actors and also vulnerable to the effects of undocumented or unauthorized changes made by insiders.

OT asset management is foundational to an effective OT cybersecurity program. OT asset management includes inventory management, configuration management, vulnerability management, and the detection of unauthorized changes. Effective OT asset management can improve production safety and reliability while reducing OT cyber risk. OT asset management also delivers the depth and breadth of information that cybersecurity professionals, as well as control system engineers, need to secure ICS assets effectively. However, OT asset management in many organizations is characterized by bad data about inventory, configurations, and vulnerabilities; poor change management practices; and misplaced assumptions, such as the notion that acquiring asset inventory or configuration data requires an IP address or device scan.

In this session:
• Review five real-world asset management use cases and their cybersecurity implications
• See how OT asset management can provide deep visibility into the cybersecurity posture of industrial assets – all the way down to the field instrument and control strategy level – without the risk associated with active polling of devices
• Understand how improving OT asset management improves both OT cybersecurity and process reliability
• Identify strategies to improve OT asset management and cybersecurity within your own organization