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Environmental, Health & Safety :: Plant & Personnel Safety :: Plant Security

June 1, 2011

Cybersecurity for Chemical Engineers

Securing control systems in CPI facilities is gaining attention as threats become more sophisticated and overall plant security is in the spotlight

Andrew Ginter, Waterfall Security Solutions and  Walt Sikora, Industrial Defender

There was a time, not long ago, when most groups responsible for industrial control systems (ICS) in the chemical process industries (CPI) were not much worried about security. They had their firewalls in place and their remote access servers, and overall that worked for them. Rarely, a virus would sneak in and usually do little damage. The affected computers would need to be shut down and cleaned out, but this could often be done without even scheduling a shutdown of the process.

Now, however, malware has become much more sophisticated, and all users of industrial control systems need to be aware of the threats. A basic understanding of cybersecurity can be helpful in keeping control systems secure. This article describes concepts such as “defense-in-depth,” as well as emerging practices in this field.

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