exida explains Blog

Does Your ICS Service Provider Need Training?

Does Your ICS Service Provider Need Training?

Today’s owner operators and lease operators of industrial production facilities frequently employ service providers for projects and upgrades, as well as operations and maintenance. These contractors often travel to many sites, carry their own copies of source code and files, and use multiple PCs with multiple engineering tools for…

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Bridging the OT / IT Cybersecurity Gap

Bridging the OT / IT Cybersecurity Gap

Personnel responsible for protecting organizational assets within Operations Technology (OT) groups would seem to have the same mission as those responsible for protecting organizational assets within Information Technology (IT) groups, and be tightly aligned. Spending any amount of time with Industrial Control System (ICS) clients, however, shows that is…

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Cyber Risk Assessments and Security Level Verification: Security Level Verification (Part 3 of 3)

Cyber Risk Assessments and Security Level Verification: Security Level Verification (Part 3 of 3)

The exposure of industrial facilities to cybersecurity threats has never been higher. An analysis performed by IBM security found that the number of attacks on SCADA systems increased 636% from 2012 to 2014, with 675,816 cybersecurity incidents in January 2014 [1]. Finding an effective method for evaluating the current…

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Who needs sliced bread?  We’ve got ARCHx!
  • by John Yozallinas, CFSE
  • Tuesday, December 04, 2018
  • Software

Who needs sliced bread?  We’ve got ARCHx!

I’ve heard this phrase so many times in my life… “<Something> is the best thing since sliced bread.” I personally can’t remember a time when sliced bread was not available, but I certainly remember going to the deli and having them use the slicing machine before handing me a bag…

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Comparing the IEC 62443 Software Engineering Process to IEC 61508: Where Do They Overlap?

Comparing the IEC 62443 Software Engineering Process to IEC 61508: Where Do They Overlap?

With the appearance of malware and nation state attacks on Industrial Control Systems (ICS), such as the Stuxnet (2010), Industroyer (2016) and TRITON (2017) attacks, the IEC 62433 standards are gaining wider attention.  

While the potential targets to attack in an ICS system are many-fold, one plant asset that…

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Functional Safety Certification Started with Logic Solvers
  • by Dr. William Goble, CFSE
  • Tuesday, November 27, 2018
  • Certification

Functional Safety Certification Started with Logic Solvers

IEC 61508 functional safety certification began in the 1990s. As I recall, the only organizations doing this work in those days were TÜV Rheinland and TÜV Product Services (now TÜV Sud). These two companies remain competitors. 

Functional safety certification started with logic solvers. Some engineers and regulators at the…

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Cyber Risk Assessments and Security Level Verification: Detailed Risk Assessments (Part 2 of 3)

Cyber Risk Assessments and Security Level Verification: Detailed Risk Assessments (Part 2 of 3)

The exposure of industrial facilities to cybersecurity threats has never been higher. An analysis performed by IBM security found that the number of attacks on SCADA systems increased 636% from 2012 to 2014, with 675,816 cybersecurity incidents in January 20141. Finding an effective method for evaluating the current level…

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Are You Undertaking Periodic Personnel Performance Assessments?

Are You Undertaking Periodic Personnel Performance Assessments?

One of the changes that was made in 2016 to the IEC 61511 standard was the inclusion of periodic personnel assessments (clause 5.2.2.3), whereby a procedure is required to manage the competence of all those involved in the SIS lifecycle; “periodic” assessments are to be carried out to document…

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Preventing Cyberattacks by Following Practical Guidance in IEC 62443

Preventing Cyberattacks by Following Practical Guidance in IEC 62443

Isn’t it frustrating when you experience an event that disrupts operations and then discover it could have been prevented? Very often a detailed analysis will reveal that a combination of (preventable) mistakes and unknown factors caused the incident. Training can help the mistakes, but dealing with the unknowns is a little…

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IACS Cybersecurity IEC 62443: Agile Lifecycle and Documentation

IACS Cybersecurity IEC 62443: Agile Lifecycle and Documentation

Industrial Automation Control Systems (IACS) Cybersecurity based on IEC 62443 was created to be compatible with agile development methodology. The standard deliberately talks about processes and not phases, such as those in the waterfall model. The processes defined can be met simultaneously and are, most likely, already being followed…

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Using SILSafeData to Check Your Failure Data Source
  • by Dr. William Goble, CFSE
  • Monday, October 29, 2018
  • Certification

Using SILSafeData to Check Your Failure Data Source

www.SILSafeData.com is a complimentary resource that contains the upper and lower bounds failure rates for many categories of automation equipment, as well as the methodology used by exida to derive the numbers.  

Many of you have asked how to…

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Bad Actor Knockdown: The “Whac-A-Mole” of Alarm Management?

Bad Actor Knockdown: The “Whac-A-Mole” of Alarm Management?

Does Your Burner Management System Meet Your Tolerable Risk?

Does Your Burner Management System Meet Your Tolerable Risk?

My previous blog mentioned the fact that a Burner Management System (BMS) is unique, in that this instrumented layer is the last line of defense and may be the only protection layer in the case of a BPCS failure.

Have you ever performed an analysis to determine…

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Managing Unconfirmed Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities like Supermicro

Managing Unconfirmed Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities like Supermicro

Unconfirmed vulnerabilities are not usually a big issue, but when one occurs like Supermicro, plant management will ask a simple question: “Do we have an issue or not?” 

Having been on the receiving end of this blunt exchange, I realize it can be painful and embarrassing to communicate,…

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Hazard Analysis and Risk Assessment of Collaborative Robotic Systems

Hazard Analysis and Risk Assessment of Collaborative Robotic Systems

The world of collaborative robots, or cobots, is making headway. According to a recent report by the International Federation of Robots (IFR), along with Loup Ventures, global robotics spending will reach $13 billion in 2025. Currently, collaborative robots only make up about 3% of all robot sales. This number…

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