Sensor monitoring technology can make critical infrastructures less attractive targets for ransomware

Ransomware and other IT-originated cyberattacks can affect control systems when IT networks are connected to OT networks or insecure IOT devices are connected to OT networks. Off-line sensor monitoring technology doesn’t stop a ransomware attack, rather the technology is oblivious to the ransomware or IT attack. The off-line process sensor monitoring can provide real time […]

It may not be possible to recognize a “Cyber Pearl Harbor” as a cyber event

Ransomware attacks will continue to occur as they are so profitable. Unlike control system cyberattacks, network cyberattacks are short-lived as they do not damage critical hardware which is why network cyberattacks are not a “Cyber Pearl Harbor”.  Yet that is the government and industry’s focus. For control systems, it is the opposite. When a control […]

July 1st Air Force Cyber College Control System Cyber Security Seminar

July 1, 2021 from 1:00-2:00PM CDT, I will be presenting “Beyond Ransomware – Cyber Security is More than IT” to the US Air Force Cyber College. With the spate of public disclosures about ransomware incidents, why are the Chinese transformer case, SolarWinds impacts on control systems, and other actual control system incidents not being discussed? It […]

Time to start thinking of your operations as a target

“Whenever you do a thing, act as if all the world were watching”[1] – Thomas Jefferson Jake Brodsky shared an article about another water utility incident and went on to write a blog about it (  ).  Both of these got me thinking.  Assuming there is a desire for achieving excellence is there something […]

Yet Another Water Plant at Risk?

It’s Thursday, June 17th and yet another water utility got hacked using Teamviewer and an account that should have been removed. Ladies and Gentlemen of the water utility business: Please get more serious about how you manage remote access. If you don’t absolutely need it, don’t use remote access software. If you have people on […]

What happened at the Taishan Unit 1 nuclear plant in China?

June 14, 2021, CNN reported that the Chinese Taishan Unit 1 EPR nuclear reactor experienced unusual operating conditions. Specifically, Framatome warned of an “imminent radiological threat”. The warning included an accusation that the Chinese safety authority was raising the safety limits for radiation detection limit to avoid having to shut it down. June 16, 2021, […]

PLC TOP20 Programming Tips

Among the tribes of engineers, there are certain things we just have to learn by doing. One of them is PLC programming. Somehow, we engineers are expected to emerge from college knowing good practices for programming a PLC. Some of us older engineers learned to program using FORTRAN. If we were lucky, we learned about […]