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Whitepaper

Kepware Communications Solutions Address Security at Both User and Interface Levels

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Kepware Communications Solutions Address Security at Both User and Interface Levels

By Craig Resnick

Information technology and automation are the backbones of most manufacturing operations; however, safety and security breaches caused by IT-related risks are on the rise. In the coming years, both the rate of technology change and the degree of required information integration are predicted to remain high. How will we manage the associated risks? How can we secure plant systems in the future?

In industrial applications, the goal is to keep the plant operational and to secure all data exchange. Security breaches in automation systems cannot be tolerated because of the potential threat they pose to production, personnel safety, and the environment. Although plant security and safety are top priority, other important points include data integrity (the data should not be manipulated), deterministic data delivery, confidentiality (only authorized users have data access), and authenticity (the data origin must be without ambiguity).

The ability to securely move information between software applications and hardware appliances is critical to any automated process. This requires a communications platform that provides the interoperability necessary to be layered into the control system. Today, the designers and implementers of these systems take a "defense-in-depth" approach to securing their critical infrastructure. They expect that each layer in the control…

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