Manufacturing and Cybersecurity: Know the Essentials.

Author:Souza, Chris

* It's no secret that the security climate on the internet is becoming more dangerous by the day. This is especially true for business professionals in the manufacturing space, where cyber attacks are only becoming more frequent and more costly with each passing year.

According to a study conducted by the Ponemon Institute, 70 percent of all organizations said that their security risk increased significantly in 2017 alone. About 230,000 new malware samples are discovered on a daily basis and that number is expected to increase significantly over time. In addition to this, the average consolidated cost of a single data breach incident rose to $3.86 million last year, a massive increase of about 6 percent from the year before.

In 2019, smartphones or tablets won't be the only worry--it will be the countless devices that collectively make up the internet of things. Connected devices all creating and sharing an enormous amount of data at all times, will become one of the biggest targets for malware attacks according to security researchers, which means that the situation is about to worsen for the industries that depend on them.

Industries like the manufacturing sector.

Over the past few years alone, attacks against manufacturing organizations in particular have been steadily increasing in a way that is becoming more and more difficult to ignore. According to a recent survey by the Alert Logic cybersecurity firm, about half of all manufacturers say that they've suffered from some type of cyber incident, whereas 24 percent of them indicated they were luckily in a position that their existing cybersecurity processes prevented any type of appreciable impact. Unfortunately, an equal number had indicated that they sustained significant "financial or business losses" due to a breach. All told, roughly 400 manufacturers were attacked every day during 2016, amounting to about $3 billion in combined losses.

So why is the situation so grim and what needs to be done about it? The answer to these questions and ones just like them require manufacturers to keep a few key things in mind.

Part of the reason why manufacturers in particular make such an attractive target for hackers has to do with the value of the information available to steal during a successful attack. If a hacker focuses their attention on stealing credit card numbers from private citizens, they may be able to get through a few hundred dollars in fraudulent charges before the card is shut...

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