Why OT Network Monitoring is Important in the Corporate Arena

As technology continues to evolve companies are faced with an almost overwhelming barrage of threats to their networks. And, with the upswing in operational technology security threats, the need for OT Network Monitoring couldn’t be overly emphasized.

Operational technology (OT) systems are progressively at the center of today’s modern industrial processes. They have provided organizations, particularly in the corporate arenas, with the ability to better automate, control and monitor various transactions in their systems and more importantly, incorporate them with their operational and financial management systems.

OT has become a valuable tool in detecting alterations within the physical system processes. There are many examples of OT systems including supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), programmable logic controllers (PLC), process information (PI) systems and Computer Numerical Control (CNC).

OT is frequently subject to various threat landscapes. Furthermore, these inherent risks are continuously becoming more sophisticated and increasing. As systems become more connected, threats become more common and often risk management practices lag. Failure to properly address these risks will likely translate into disruptions in production, cataclysmic financial loss and potentially, injuries or fatalities.

Operational Technology Common Challenges and Opportunities

Historically, OT systems used to be proprietary and isolated from corporate IT systems. Today, most corporate arenas have embraced the IT/OT convergence. OT suppliers have now largely merged onto connected, common or shared IT platforms (Windows and IP networks, for instances). This shift presents several opportunities, minimize costs and ultimately, improve revenues.

However, realizing these benefits also come with downsides like exposing industrial operations to common IT-based threats. OT networks become prone to failure and vulnerable to third-party risks.

The Importance of Continuous OT Network Monitoring

Is OT Network Monitoring important? The short and obvious answer is “yes.” Overall, it is important to protect your business or your brand.

Monitoring networks are much more commonplace in the corporate arena and it is necessary for several reasons, as follows:

– Early Threat Detection: 

A simple weakness in your OT network system can easily become a loophole, and before you might even know it, the damage is already being done. Monitoring will provide you insights and specific event logs to immediately identify threats and events that are suspicious.

– Internal Security Policies: 

Monitoring your OT network means you will be alerted should threats to your organization’s proprietary systems are identified or when your internal security policies are violated.

– Disaster Recovery:

OT Network monitoring can be an invaluable help for your corporate disaster recovery plan development and with regards to how your company can get back up and running efficiently in case of disasters. Network monitoring will help determine any gaps between your current system setup and what is needed to be done in the future.

– Identify Trends: 

Preemptive monitoring can give you a roadmap to identify key trends in OT network health and benchmark your overall performance. CyberBit offers automated OT security solutions to detect even the hard-to-detect OT threats and anomalies critical for your corporate arena. If your organization has adapted to these key trends, it can provide a valuable asset to greatly improve your security posture.

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