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Operational environments are no longer deployed in isolation and the attack surface continues to grow making it harder to secure the operational process. As organizations continue to digitize and look to differentiate within the market place, the traditional air-gapped operational environment no longer exists.
Therefore, more needs to done in order to ensure that proper controls are in place and greater overall visibility is achieved. Time to go beyond passive defenses and move towards active defense.
Developing strong security policies
Strong cyber security starts with determining strong security policies. This step is less concerned with addressing the specific technology used to secure your network, and more concerned with addressing your security at regular intervals and determining the corrective actions required to secure your network.
Determining best practices for cyber security at your mine site can include many low cost, easy to institute changes that can greatly reduce the attackable footprint of your network.
Taking these simple steps helps protect you against not only malicious attacks, but accidental attacks. This comes with the added bonus of keeping only appropriate traffic on your network, and keeping inappropriate traffic off, allowing your operational application to run smoothly.
Training your personnel
Once you have those best practices defined and the easy stuff is checked off the list, you have to train your staff. The easiest way to get the password to a network SSID for an attacker is to simply ask someone who knows it.
Developing, then educating your staff on a proper password, and key sharing and storage practice can often be the biggest step you can take in securing your network. The social engineering practices used by attackers remain the #1 available exploit to be taken advantage of.
Making staff aware of this and ensuring proper process is followed whenever a password needs to be exchanged can help to shore up your defenses more than any technology, vendor, or software patch could. How many keyboards at your mine have a password right underneath them on a sticky note? What’s the cost if a disgruntled employee gets that password?
Selecting the right technology
Lastly, the technology can be your last line of defense against an attack. Choosing the right technology and implementing it correctly takes experience, training and vigilance.
New security vulnerabilities are found with regularity, whether the exploits exist in protocols, software or hardware, your mine can be at risk of suffering an attack. As your mine’s fleet management and production systems become more and more critical, the cost of an attack versus the cost of securing yourself quickly tips in favor of security.
Becoming compliance driven and taking a risk-based approach to your security allows you to get on the offensive against attackers, securing all avenues they have to enter your network, even preventing accidental or coincidental breaches.
3D-P designs networks with this in mind and strives to give you a secure network and provide you with the necessary updates to keep your hardware secure and up to date against the latest vulnerabilities. Working with our Managed Service offerings, we can also work with your team to provide the policy and pro-active steps you need to remain secure in the future.