Tokyo – Yokogawa Electric Corporation and McAfee have announced the signing of a partnership agreement to offer holistic and value-added IT security solutions for the industrial automation world. The partnership addresses the imperative of digital threats to industrial control systems. In particular, the partners will collaborate to offer Yokogawa's customers seamless solutions to avoid gaps between different IT systems, across proprietary solutions and expanded communication channels (e. g., IP, wireless, and mobile) and running common operating systems and applications. According to McAfee's recent threats report, cyber crime, hacktivismand cyber warfare are on the rise worldwide and are growing ever more sophisticated. Governments, large enterprises, small business and home users face a wide range of digital threats, and recent prominent cases of industrial sabotage and espionage have escalated these concerns.
Today's cybersecurity threats mean that industrial control system users and suppliers alike must be increasingly vigilant against current and future intrusions, as human safety and environmental impacts are directly at stake.
While today's process control systems can take advantage of advanced general-purpose IT to reduce costs, improve performance, enable interoperability with APC, MES and other systems, and add other important new capabilities, the very same technologies have made today's industrial control systems increasingly vulnerable to security intrusions,malicious or otherwise,from both within and outside the plant. Organizations tasked with running critical infrastructure such as oil and gas pipelines, chemical plants, power stations and water treatment facilities must look at holistic security systems across two disparate, yet interconnected zones, enterprise IT and industrial control systems.
This partnership addresses the issue that industrial process control systems typically have a three-to-five-times longer lifecycle than typical commercial systems. Since both system technology and cyber threats are ever-changing, automation system suppliers must embrace a lifecycle approach to industrial cybersecurity. "Security measures for control systems are indispensable. Yokogawa is continually making stringent efforts to provide our customers optimum control system security solutions, starting with the development of highly secure instruments and systems and extending to the provision of operational support services," said Nobuaki Konishi, vice president of Yokogawa's IA Systems Business Division (IA Platform Business Headquarters). "This partnership will allow us to combine our technology and plant security know-how with McAfee's technology to enhance the security of our products and our line-up of security solution services covering the entire lifecycle of our customers' plants. This will include the integration of anti-virus software with industrial control systems used in the process industries."
Wahab Yusoff, vice president for McAfee South Asia, said, "Businesses are looking for integrated security solutions, moving from simply securing components to understanding and measuring the security of a business system as a whole. That is why we feel strongly about this opportunity to work with Yokogawa as a leading global supplier of industrial control systems with a history of nearly 100 years of growing expertise and experience."