Wurldtech and exida join forces...

In an announcement I'd been expecting for some time, exida and Wurldtech have joined forces to provide subject matter expertise on the conjoined issues of functional safety and what I like to call "functional security."

Here's the press release...and in another blog post, I'll tell you why it is important and what I think it means for the future.

Wurldtech and exida Announce Global Partnership to Expand Cyber Security Certification

Leading Industrial Cyber Security & Functional Safety Experts Partner to Deliver the Achilles Cyber Security Certification Program to Vendors & Operators to Control Systems Worldwide
Vancouver, BC, CANADA – March 17, 2009 - Wurldtech™ Security Technologies, a leading provider of industrial cyber security testing and certification solutions and exida, a global supplier of functional safety products, services, and certifications, today announced that the two companies have entered into a strategic partnership.  The agreement integrates Wurldtech's Achilles™ cyber security certification program into exida’s safety service portfolio and establishes a foundation for joint development of future cyber security and safety certifications.

Launched in 2007, and now widely adopted as the standard for cyber security certification throughout the industrial automation industry, the Achilles Certification program boasts certified control systems from major suppliers such as: Emerson, Invensys, ABB, Yokogawa, HIMA and many others.
“The Achilles Certified brand is trusted globally as a benchmark for security and its adoption has resulted in a significant improvement in the security and reliability of global critical infrastructures,” said Wurldtech President Tyler Williams. “By partnering with exida, we are able to expand our current program into new markets and leverage their unparalleled safety expertise to jointly evolve the program to meet the certification needs of the automation industry today and into the future.”

This partnership was formed in response to customer requests to accelerate the expansion of the current Achilles program and include new categories such as control applications, industrial networking infrastructure and both operator integration and vendor development processes. By combining the leading security certification criteria, technology and expertise with well-established policies, procedures and best practices from the safety industry, Wurldtech and exida will be able to offer the most comprehensive and streamlined certification process to the global industrial automation industry.

“Process control system operators want to minimize risk and maximize uptime and suppliers want to be first to market with certified, reliable systems,” said John Cusimano, exida director of Security Services. “By bringing the safety and cyber security certification processes together, operators and suppliers have a single source for all of their certification needs and that positively impacts the bottom line.”

The partnership takes effect immediately and is already catching the attention of process industry vendors and manufacturers.

“Having worked with both Wurldtech and exida since their inception on independent certification efforts we see the value that this partnership will bring in being able to focus our certification activities,” said Bob Huba, DeltaV Security Architect at Emerson Process Management.  “Having a single certification process for safety and security is consistent with our integrated approach to DeltaV and DeltaV SIS. Combining our product security certification activities with our safety certification process, we can now introduce new versions of our systems without the overlap of going to several locations. That will certainly help get products to market faster and more efficiently.”