By Paul Veeneman, VP of Operations, MBA Engineering
September 15, 2020

The convergence of Operations Technology (OT), Information Technology (IT), Internet of Things (IoT), and Industrial IoT has brought with it a wave of connected devices, systems and applications that present significant cybersecurity challenges. In the coming years, these changes will have an impact on the world’s critical infrastructure systems, including water and wastewater systems, electrical power utilities, telecom systems, healthcare systems, industrial environments, agriculture, manufacturing, and more.

Over the past decade critical infrastructure industries have transformed the operations technology landscape, introducing a proliferation of SCADA systems, industrial controls, and digital sensors to deliver ever-increasing intelligence. These interrelated systems can optimize real-time data acquisition, production operations, competitive advantage and integrated supply chain. Conversely over the same time period, traditional information technology infrastructure has experienced consistent cybersecurity maturity. The introduction of cybersecurity frameworks, new processes and procedures, and updated risk management and mitigation efforts help combat the sophisticated cyber threats that exist today. Now, more than ever, companies, organizations, agencies and corporations need to bridge the gap between the traditionally separate worlds of IT and OT management, personnel, systems and architectures.

There is no single “silver bullet” solution to the security challenges facing IT and OT teams today. Only a comprehensive approach to cybersecurity knowledge, preparation, techniques, tools, processes and controls can bring about the reduction of cyber related risk to IT, OT and IoT infrastructure and architecture. The constraints represented by OT devices, such as the facilities and manufacturing environment, real-time production, safety, reliability, and long device lifetimes, make the security of these connected devices more complicated. 

Cybersecurity for IT, OT and IoT integrated manufacturing and industrial environments requires organizational leadership and commitment as the starting point for dynamic communication, collaboration and execution. Building cohesion at the various levels of IT and OT business units will create the necessary capacity for decision makers, stakeholders and administrative personnel to work collectively, learning from one another, developing a common vocabulary, and focusing on the IT, OT and IoT cybersecurity challenges.

The Cybersecurity Summit IT / OT / IoT Seminar will provide IT and OT stakeholders (management, administration, and practitioners) the keys to successfully meet the cybersecurity challenges that face our interconnected world. The seminar will bring together an unprecedented collection of cybersecurity industry experts, innovators, and practitioners from across the critical infrastructure landscape to deliver guidance and expertise in the areas of IoT cybersecurity threats, security frameworks, data integrity and confidentiality, endpoint and application security, as well as supply chain risk management.

Paul Veeneman is a thought leader in Information Technology with over 27 years of experience across multiple industries including Agriculture, Finance, Healthcare, Oil & Gas, and Manufacturing.  Veeneman has been actively working within the nation’s critical infrastructure, addressing challenges, providing guidance, insight and innovation in Industrial Controls/OT/IoT/IIoT/SCADA, Cyber Security requirements, governance, education and management … full bio