OT/ICS Cybersecurity: You Cannot Secure What You Cannot See

With smarter, integrated automation comes a difficult challenge that has repercussions from the boardroom to manufacturing operations: ICS cybersecurity. It is generally well understood that you cannot secure what you cannot see. That is why accurate, up-to-date visibility of the system inventory is a key element of any cybersecurity solution. The truth is most ICS inventories reflect only non-proprietary, IT-based assets, which are roughly 20 percent of the cyber assets required for a comprehensive ICS cybersecurity program. The remaining 80 percent are proprietary, OT-based assets that make retrieving inventory data difficult as there are no common sets of protocols, such as WMI or SNMP, available. In a growing threat landscape, insufficient control system security is no longer tenable. If you’re not gathering a comprehensive ICS asset inventory because you cannot secure what you cannot see, the cyber risks are real despite all other cybersecurity safeguards.

In this paper, we’ll discuss industry best practices for hardening ICS cybersecurity, focusing on the first and most crucial step: ICS inventory management.

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