What We’re Reading, Week of 9/24

eWeek: BYOD Initiatives Require Careful Thought, Implementation Computerworld: 6 signs that the U.S. is overtaking the world at IPv6 InformationWeek- Is Windows 8 Too Risky For IT? Dark Reading– FBI Warns Of Scams Targeting Financial...

What We're Reading, Week of 9/24

eWeek: BYOD Initiatives Require Careful Thought, Implementation Computerworld: 6 signs that the U.S. is overtaking the world at IPv6 InformationWeek- Is Windows 8 Too Risky For IT? Dark Reading– FBI Warns Of Scams Targeting Financial...

Secure Communications in Harsh Environments, Part 3

Editor’s Note: This is part three in a three-part series on remote access in harsh environments. Part one of series details the emergence of harsh environment threats, while part two covers the risks of outdoor access points.  By Patrick Oliver Graf, General Manager NCP engineering VPN: The Indispensable Barrier So then, how do you secure SCADA systems against such attacks? The answer is simple, with the same measures as a regular corporate network.  This means, providing a protective mechanism, like firewalls, between regulation and control units and external Internet traffic. Firewalls analyze each access to the system, and block suspicious traffic or access to certain ports. Furthermore, IPsec VPNs, with DES or AES encryption, are essential. When using protected tunnels to send data traffic, it’s impossible for hackers to listen in to data packets of PLCs, Local Control Units or RTUs, analyze them and draw conclusions to the technologies and systems employed in the SCADA network at hand. If the SCADA infrastructure is decentralized and has endpoints in various locations, it is sensible to implement an additional VPN server and a gateway. In this, the gateway acts as firewall and guardian by deciding which data of which systems receive network access. Today, controls, data capturing systems and automation systems are similarly prone to hacker attacks as PCs, server and notebooks in a LAN. Therefore, those systems need the same amount of protection. This is especially true for systems with remote access connections. And remote access requires the use of VPNs and the corresponding server, clients and gateways. With that, a VPN is indispensable – even in harsh...

Considering the Total Cost of Technology Ownership with Joe the CIO

Today, we join Joe the CIO as he ponders technology investment costs. In particular, Joe can’t help but wonder if there are some expenses related to a recent remote access project that he overlooked — or worse, ignored. This predicament might sound familiar to anyone who oversees technology purchasing. In fact, many don’t realize the majority of accrued expenses pertain to operations and personnel, not hardware and software investments. In Joe’s case, realizing this helped him optimize and ensure the efficiency of his remote access technology, with help from NCP engineering. Want to learn how? Check out this video....

Readers’ Poll: Is Your Company’s Corporate Network Secure?

This week, we rejoined Joe the (paper) CIO on his quest to find the most thorough, cost-efficient way to secure his company’s corporate network. Now, we’d like to know more about your experience doing the same. Is your company doing enough to keep its information safe? Let us know how you feel in today’s poll – and  as always, please feel free to elaborate in the comments section. Also, stay tuned next week for more Joe! [polldaddy...