Securing industrial networks can – and may – be easy


Implementing safety inside the economic community is usually a daunting process. Safety directives comparable to CISA’s Shields Up have brought about extra industrial organizations to evaluate their community posture and search steering to enhance the protections of vital sources for enterprise continuity. Upon looking for this steering, many are left confused with phrases comparable to Zero Belief and Microsegmentation, leading to extra questions and no path to motion.

Safety can, and may, be easy. Whether or not you comply with steering from ISA/IEC 62443—the Nationwide Institute of Requirements and Expertise (NIST)—or have applied the Purdue mannequin, the core safety precept is to divide the community into a number of zones and create coverage for the communication that crosses zone boundaries.

Defining secured zones

Let’s take the ISA/IEC 62443 definition of zones and conduits. A zone, based on the usual, is a set of bodily and functionally united belongings which have related safety necessities. In a producing facility, this could possibly be a single manufacturing line. A conduit is described because the communication between zones. The conduit is the communication channel wherein safety coverage ought to be utilized.

Defining the zones and figuring out which coverage to assign to the conduits is what makes safety perceived as tough. Nonetheless, segmentation shouldn’t be seen as a single standalone process. Efficient segmentation is comprised of two key pillars: visibility and management.

ICS visibility informs OT segmentation

Visibility into industrial management system (ICS) operations provides us a listing of all belongings that exist on the community, together with their communication patterns. This allows us to visualise the processes in our networks and reply the query: what are the zones on my community? Utilizing Cisco Cyber Imaginative and prescient, an ICS visibility software that’s embedded into the community infrastructure, operators can determine belongings that belong to a course of and assign them to a gaggle for simpler visualization. Quite than focusing consideration on each movement, from each asset, communication may be visualized within the conduits between the zones, offering a blueprint of the coverage that have to be outlined.

As for the enforcement of those visitors patterns, that too may be embedded into the community infrastructure utilizing a expertise known as TrustSec. Cisco TrustSec supplies you with a better strategy to handle entry management insurance policies throughout switches utilizing a safety group matrix.

As visitors enters and leaves their community phase, fairly than implementing visitors utilizing IP data, Cisco TrustSec makes use of a Safety Group Tag (SGT) embedded within the MAC layer of the community visitors to find out coverage. Utilizing Cisco Identification Companies Engine (ISE) SGTs may be assigned to your zones and the matrix can be utilized to regulate the communication throughout the conduits.

Utilizing the built-in integrations, Cyber Imaginative and prescient shares its grouping data with Cisco ISE so operations managers can create and handle belongings teams of their OT visibility software, so IT can simply create the correct management guidelines between these zones in ISE.

In a current webinar, I went into extra particulars, diving into the ISA/IEC 62443 zones and conduits mannequin and displaying how you can use Cisco ISE and Cyber Imaginative and prescient to implement OT Microsegmentation. You’ll be able to watch the replay by registering right here.

Till then, take a look at our ISA/IEC 62443-3-3 white paper and be sure to subscribe to our Industrial Safety Publication.



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