Security for any process plant has always been an issue. Before there was connectivity, there were threats of physical damage, and then the security of data from physical attacks. However, there had to be actual physical access to a device or hard copy of information.
Now, hackers can remotely access one device and take over an entire eco-system. According to Sean Peasley of Deloitte in a presentation at VMA’s 2018 Market Outlook Workshop, this is partly due to the fact that the internet was not built with security in mind; it was built for speed and availability.
Peasley noted that one-third of enterprises report using the Internet of Things (IoT), with another third planning to do so, primarily to enable predictive maintenance and to track asset condition and operating performance. Close to 50% of manufacturers use mobile apps to do this, and 75% of manufacturers use Wi-Fi networks to transmit data to/from connected products. Many companies even use sensor-equipped wearables to ensure worker safety and improve labor efficiency and utilization.