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Staying ahead of the cybersecurity game

11th June 2019

Michael Stranau, Executive Sales & Business Development Officer, Zybersafe, talks about the role employees have to play in maximising cyber security

Michael Stranau, Executive Sales & Business Development Officer, Zybersafe, talks about the role employees have to play in maximising cyber security

Michael Stranau, Executive Sales & Business Development Officer, Zybersafe
Michael Stranau, Zybersafe at Future Oil & Gas

How difficult is to stay ahead of the game in tackling the escalation of potential cyber threats?

A way to stay ahead of the cybersecurity game is to train your employees at all levels in cyber awareness, define specific procedures in case of incidents and to be alert as to how data flows inside your organisation. Companies need to define who owns data within the organisation and who is responsible for protection hereof. Ownership of data protection is vital, and companies must stay in control of data at all stages regardless if the data is at rest or in transmission. Ownership and responsibility for data security need to be addressable to a specific individual in the organization. 

Another way to stay ahead on cyber threats in your chosen industry is to seek external advice. Fresh external input to your risk assessment keeps you alert to new threats. Several of Zybersafe’s customers have had valuable gain from entering into partnerships with specialized Small and Medium sized companies and had new angles to their risk assessment through this type of partnership.

What is the biggest threat facing the offshore industry?

The business segments of the offshore industry have a wish for smart services to increase business intelligence, business optimisation and cost reductions. One example is the wish to open data flows between systems for business information (Business operations etc.) on the IT administration networks on one side and the operational technology systems (Industrial control systems) on the other side.

The ability to allow remote access to IT administration systems is trivial today. However, that is not the case for remote access to the operational networks, especially not such networks on offshore platforms. It has been the norm to keep the operational systems totally segmented and isolated from the administration network and the internet.

It is Zybersafe’s view on upstream digitalisation that Cyber security needs to be included in the development of smart services from the earliest possible project stage. When digital transformation of Operational Technology is on the agenda, it is our suggestion that operators uphold the OT value of segmentation of secure data from other data. Segmentation of data transmissions can prolong longevity of OT Equipment that is typically of older date and often are designed years before the current cyber threat level.