Is IIoT Security a Showstopper? 4 Move-Forward Tips from Industry Experts

Hannover, Germany and Chicago, IL — Security for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) requires a thoughtful plan but is not a showstopper according to exhibitors at the upcoming Industrial Automation North America 2016. The trade show, co-located at IMTS from September 12–17, 2016, at McCormick Place in Chicago, offers a wealth of resources and solutions on IIoT, integrated industry and more.

Industry Experts Offer 4 IIoT Security Recommendations

While manufacturers should remain vigilant about security in building an IIoT strategy, it should not prevent moving forward. Four solution providers who will exhibit at Industrial Automation North America 2016 offered these recommendations:

Recommendation #1—Don’t assume cloud means Internet, Intranet works too

“IIoT doesn’t need to be on the Internet. It can also be run on an Intranet. In fact, you can use both on-premise and publicly accessible clouds,” said Sloan Zupan, senior product manager, Mitsubishi Electric Automation, Inc. “To manage risk, manufacturers should determine the sensitivity level of the information to be shared, who needs access in the organization and then choose the best technology.”

Recommendation #2—Modernize your security technology

“Although security is a critical issue, it should not prevent a manufacturer from taking advantage of IIoT. A modern security framework requires a holistic defense-in-depth approach that addresses both internal and external threats to minimize vulnerabilities when applied appropriately,” said Beth Parkinson, market development director, The Connected Enterprise, Rockwell Automation. “Manufacturers need to assess current security processes and develop an evolution plan to use modern technology that offers layers and depth of security focusing on physical, network, computer, application and device security.”

Recommendation #3—Focus on operational requirements, not IT policy

“Operations and IT need to eliminate barriers and work together to create the right security. Although IT provides security, the person in charge of manufacturing operations provides an equally important perspective,” said John Kowal, director, business development, B&R Industrial Automation Corporation. “If operations describes a need, IT needs to consider the business imperative. What the operations team requires must be secured to move the business forward. IT does need to address security threats as they continue to evolve.”

Recommendation #4—Break down who needs access to what

“Manufacturers need to define basic rules about the access level for consumers of data,” said Greg Giles, executive director of MES, Red Viking. “Within that framework, security needs to be assessed against the potential threat presented by the data. Reasonable mitigation strategies should be implemented based upon the specifics. An application may require a basic web front-end encrypted with SSL, or could require a more stringent user identification system. For more sophisticated needs, servers may be configured in a manner which strikes an appropriate balance between security and ease of access, but, these security decisions start with defining needs.”

IIoT Security and More at Industrial Automation North America

IIoT, integrated industry and more will be key themes at Industrial Automation North America 2016, part of the HANNOVER MESSE portfolio. Discussions will mirror the top themes at April’s HANNOVER MESSE 2016, the world’s largest manufacturing trade fair where the U.S. was selected as this year’s partner country.

“To help manufacturers navigate the Industrial Internet of Things, Industrial Automation North America 2016 offers a robust program focusing on everything from infrastructure to security,” said Larry Turner, president/CEO of Hannover Fairs USA, a subsidiary of Deutsche Messe, the organizer of HANNOVER MESSE. “Whether a manufacturer is at an early stage or more advanced level of IIoT, the show offers a one-stop shop to keep pace with this fast-evolving best practice.”

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About Industrial Technology Events North America

Industrial Automation North America, MDA North America, ComVac North America, Industrial Supply North America, and Surface Technology North America are organized by Deutsche Messe’s U.S. subsidiary, Hannover Fairs USA, Inc.. The five events run parallel to IMTS 2016 and belong to Deutsche Messe’s HANNOVER MESSE Worldwide portfolio.

About Deutsche Messe AG

From its headquarters in Hannover, Germany, Deutsche Messe AG plans and stages leading capital goods trade fairs around the globe. The company ranks among the five biggest tradeshow organizers in Germany, with projected revenue of 335 million euros in 2015. The company’s event portfolio includes such world-leading events as CeBIT (digital business), HANNOVER MESSE (industrial technology), BIOTECHNICA/LABVOLUTION (biotechnology and lab technology), CeMAT (intralogistics and supply chain management), didacta (education), DOMOTEX (carpets and floor coverings), INTERSCHUTZ (fire prevention, disaster relief, rescue, safety and security), and LIGNA (woodworking, wood processing, forestry). With approx. 1,200 employees and a network of 66 representatives, subsidiaries and branch offices, Deutsche Messe is present in more than 100 countries worldwide.

About Hannover Fairs USA

Hannover Fairs USA (HFUSA) develops and manages marketing programs at Deutsche Messe events in Hannover, Germany and the United States, as well as in such key emerging markets as China, India and Turkey. Working closely with its clients, Hannover Fairs helps them maintain their competitive position on and off the event floor. The company’s programs reflect the global scope of Deutsche Messe’s activities.

Media Contact:

Kathy Zoeller

Mattson Communications, Inc.