The energy industry, comprising of oil, gas and chemical industries, public utilities (including nuclear, electric & coal), and renewable energies, is at constant risk from cyber attacks. Highly publicized attacks on the energy sector include Energetic Bear (using the Havex Trojan) and Icefog (using a backdoor dubbed Javafog). The energy sector is particularly vulnerable because it possesses valuable intellectual property and provides critical services that could be targeted by hacktivists or foreign state actors for sabotage purposes. With legacy systems built decades ago, the energy industry faces further challenges in adding cyber security measures to systems that were not built with cyber attacks in mind, coupled with the fact that down-time for system upgrades is virtually impossible due to their critical nature.
What should be done to protect energy facilities against cyber attacks?
Portable Media Security
Portable media (such as USB drives, CDs/DVDs and mobile devices) is another way that cyber attackers can gain entry to a system: one of the ways the Stuxnet worm was spread was through an infected USB stick. Because of these risks, government regulations have been implemented, requiring these organizations to ensure that their facilities are protected against cyber attacks
In order to comply with these regulations, which necessitate guarding against malware entering the organization in several ways, many public utilities have looked to OPSWAT to provide the strongest possible assurance that threats cannot enter the facility via USB drives, memory cards, or CDs/DVDs that employees and contractors bring in. OPSWAT's Metadefender Kiosk provides control over the data coming into a secure network by enabling configuration of multiple content filters based on file type, file size, anti-malware engine scan results and more. This allows public utilities to develop a workflow to protect their facilities and comply with federal regulations.
Keeping Data Secure
Sensitive information must be segregated and encrypted. When sensitive data must be shared externally, a secure file transfer system must be used to ensure confidentiality and prevent data theft. For high-security environments, networks containing sensitive data are even entirely disconnected from the Internet and other networks, in so called ‘ air-gapped networks.' Limited connectivity is possible using a cross-domain solution or data diode that enables one-way traffic only, from the lower security network to the higher security network. This ensures that for productivity purposes it is possible to connect to the Internet from the secure network, however, it is impossible for any data to leave the network. By implementing such measures, even if a cyber attack is successful, the data will always remain secure.
Recommended Products & Solutions
Detect and prevent Known & Unknown threats as well as system vulnerabilities.
OPSWAT delivers solutions and technologies that protect organizations from threats and help secure digital data flow for email, web-proxy, endpoint and kiosk deployments.Metadefender Kiosk offers the following features for maximum protection of high-security and air gapped networks:
- Scan portable media from guests and insiders with more than 30 leading anti-malware engines
- Securely transfer files into air gapped networks
- Log all files brought into an organization
- Inspect archived and encrypted files
- Sanitize high-risk files
- Integrate with data diodes
- Choose from flexible hardware deployment options from leading vendors
Integrate With Data Diodes
High-security networks often use diodes to restrict data flows. Metadefender Kiosk can be used with all leading diode vendors and has verified, deeper integrations with selected vendors.
- Multi-scanning - Maximum protection with over 30 anti-malware engines
- Data Sanitization (CDR) - 90+ data sanitization engines to prevent unknown threats
- Vulnerability Detection - Detect and prevent known vulnerabilities from entering your organization
- Heuristics - Leverage many heuristic engines to detect unknown threats
- Archive Extraction - Fast and customized archive scanning for over 30 file types
- File Type Verification - Block spoofed file types from entering your organization
- Protect from malware targeting Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android operating systems
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Securely transfer files into secure networks
Metadefender Secure File Transfer (SFT) offers a safe process for transferring data to and from secure networks. If malware is allowed to enter a secure network, it can cause serious damage, especially in the case of critical infrastructure like nuclear plants.
Log and manage all files brought into an organization
Administrators can choose how long files are kept and can track the time at which a specific user uploads and downloads a file. Metadefender SFT can be configured for a thorough scan of all files that are stored.
Inspect archived and encrypted files
Metadefender SFT leverages the capabilities of Metadefender Core’ s workflows to scan files contained within archives, both encrypted and unencrypted.
Sanitize high-risk files to avoid Zero day attacks
Certain file types such as Microsoft Office documents, PDFs, and image files often contain embedded objects such as scripts and macros that can trigger malicious code to execute when opened.