How to minimize the risks of cyber threats
With the booming expansion of the OT/IoT world and the need to bridge the gap between IT and OT, the need for more secure solutions has never been more prevalent. By automating factories, power plants, buildings, and many other aspects of our lives, we expose ourselves to the potential dangers of the “online world”, where malicious actors may be waiting to exploit our weaknesses for revenge, glory, or profit.
Threat actors have drastically evolved during the last decade, becoming better equipped and more organized. For Beijer, the commitment to cybersecurity means constantly evolving our products to meet the latest threats. This paper provides an overview of how we proactively work to mitigate threats, and what you can do, to enhance your cybersecurity today.
How we ensure a safe and reliable product
Cyber threats are a present factor, and therefore we at Beijer Electronics, work hard on improving our products cybersecurity and proactively combat threats within the cyber landscape. By continuously monitoring and auditing our products and their components, we ensure that we are up to date with regards to the latest threats and can respond to security incidents in a timely fashion. By involving Secure DevOps* early on in development, Beijer Electronics can ensure that potential vulnerabilities are caught early in the development cycle and remediated before reaching production.
Danut Niculae, Cyber Security Architect
"A lot of our customers ask us about what we do in terms of cyber security, and what we can do to help them. For us, security is not just a tick box, but it's an ever-going process which we always strive to improve upon.” says Danut Niculae, Cyber Security Architect at Beijer Electronics.
Once the products reach production and in the hands of our customers, Beijer Electronics maintains the security standards by continuously providing updates on the software and operating system. Furthermore, as part of our proactive approach, Beijer’s security team is always monitoring potential new threats and vulnerabilities to our existing products. This allows our team to quickly identify new potential issues and respond to them in a timely fashion, notifying our customers through our security advisories and delivering an updated version of our software in a timely fashion.
“Our mission at Beijer Electronics is to always improve our hardware and software and ensure that a strong cybersecurity vision is maintained all throughout our product range. Our aim is to constantly evolve and become better, understanding our customers’ needs and delivering a safe solution.” Danut Niculae explains.
Proactive design approach
To be able to defend against cyber-attacks, it is important to understand how they happen.
“By analysing attack techniques and understanding how they happen and map what would be the consequences for our customers, we can take a proactive approach in our designs to ensure that our products are safe to use.” says Danut Niculae.
When designing new features, the security team reviews the design proposal to ensure that all security aspects are taken into consideration. When moving on to implementation phase, we ensure that all code is peer reviewed and analysed by security scanners to pick up any potential issues early on.
At Beijer Electronics, we follow a framework:
- All our software components are developed by following strict security requirements.
- All requirements are reviewed and approved by Beijer’s security team.
- Secure Coding Standards are enforced and maintained through Security Risk Assessments, Static Application Security Testing (SAST) and code reviews.
- All third-party libraries utilized within our software are thoroughly scanned and scrutinized for potential security vulnerabilities.
- Code reviews are constantly performed.
- All applications are developed using the OWASP Secure Coding Practices
If you identify an issue within our products, or would like to report a vulnerability or a security incident, you can always contact our security incident mailbox: email@example.com
How to enhance your cybersecurity today
Having a secure hardware and software is not always enough, but you also need to factor in the human aspect, and therefore we would like to share a list of recommendations of what you can do, to enhance your cybersecurity today.
- First and foremost, is to be aware of the threats and danger.
- Human errors can often be a weak link, so make sure to be cautious of cyber threats and educate yourself and your team members.
- It is always recommended to configure network firewalls to restrict access to a device e.g. an HMI panel. When your devices are added to the industrial network make sure that it is separated from the other IT-infrastructure (office, etc.) to minimize exposure from a security standpoint.
- To benefit from the latest security patches, ensure that you maintain a good patching strategy.
- Only use supported equipment updated to the latest versions regarding firmware, operating systems, and other applications for all devices on the network.
- When deploying our products, ensure that your team always considers security best practices, such as password strength, user access roles and service restrictions.
“A security mindset is not only preparing and defending against malicious actors, but learning from previous mistakes and adapting your processes to address an ever changing threat landscape.” says Danut Niculae.
To summarize, being proactive and maintaining a high security level is the best defence. If you have concerns or would like to know more about what measures you can take to enhance the security measures of our products, feel free to contact our technical support teams or contact our security incident mailbox: firstname.lastname@example.org.
*SecureDevOps: SecureDevOps, also known as DevSecOps, is an approach to software development that integrates security practices into the DevOps process. It involves incorporating security considerations and controls throughout the entire software development lifecycle, from design and development to deployment and maintenance. This approach aims to improve the security and resilience of software systems by making security an integral part of the development process, rather than a separate function.