adesso Blog

Manufacturers are experiencing transformative changes at the moment. While the digitalisation of production promises to deliver efficiency and innovation, it also entails risks. Networking machines, IT systems and cloud services opens up huge potential. But what about IT security?

Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) platforms link assets and generate added value. But they also create security risks. As more and more things become connected, this leaves the IT infrastructure more vulnerable to attack. The numbers are really quite eye-opening. Every year, thousands of companies are victims of cyber attacks. According to a recent SOPHOS study, roughly half of all manufacturers were the victim of such attacks in 2022, 67 per cent of which could not be blocked.

A look into the future of digital production

These have serious consequences, including the loss of classified information, data manipulation and disruptions to business operations. There is both potential and risk associated with digital production. Proactive IT security management is essential to minimising these risks. Operation technology (OT) security management is one way to protect manufacturers against the aforementioned risks. However, the conventional method of network segregation is no longer up to the task. The threats are constantly changing and evolving. That is why today’s strategies rely on risk-based methods such as threat modelling.

Safety in numbers: the power of asset inventory management

The key to security is asset inventory management, which enables the structured recording and managing of all relevant devices on the digital shop floor. With it, a company that operates several sites can get a clear overview of its assets and assess risks.

Have you already been asked about asset inventory management at your company?

As part of a standardised questionnaire, the VDMA asks whether ‘...the adopted security capabilities of the component/machine/plant and their use’ are documented in the supplier self-disclosure on cybersecurity. But asset inventory management has more to offer than transparency on IT security. It is a way to develop targeted measures to increase IT security on the shop floor. Looking ahead, the integration of asset management at companies is crucial to ensuring long-term security.

How do you effectively protect your valuable assets?

This is where adesso is there to help you. As an experienced consulting partner that also provides customised software solutions, adesso supports manufacturers in automatically documenting assets and in identifying, evaluating and continuously monitoring potential security threats.

The path to digital production is full of risks and opportunities. But with solid IT security management and comprehensive asset inventory management, you can take advantage of the opportunities and overcome the challenges associated with networked production. Are you ready for the future of secure digital production?

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Picture Uwe  Pohlmann

Author Dr. Uwe Pohlmann

As an experienced software architect and consultant at adesso, Dr Uwe Pohlmann combines comprehensive expertise in the operational management and development of global production software platforms. In the past, he managed the Shopfloor Toolbox and the Manufacturing Execution System (MES) of a globally operating automotive supplier. He began his professional career at the Fraunhofer Institute IEM, where he completed his doctorate in the field of software engineering for cyber-physical systems. His strengths lie in the design of secure architectures and the efficient implementation of production-related digitalisation projects, supported by in-depth knowledge of OT security.

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