The energy sector is facing the challenge of proliferation of cyberattacks and they have to follow a security framework and identify security gaps to strengthen their cybersecurity capabilities.
FREMONT, CA: Energy companies have a continual pressure of being reliably available. Thus, to maintain uninterrupted delivery, providers take security for granted. To maintain speed and efficiency, many unsafe practices are used, such as default passwords, open access, and little oversight. Organizations use platforms or software that is well beyond the vendor’s intended support lifecycles. This indicates that organizations are no longer receiving patches or updates which result in security flaws. The rapid digitalization of the energy industry has presented attackers with a new surface to exploit. According to the World Energy Council, there has been a massive increase in the number of successful cyberattacks in recent years, and the amount will increase in the future. Here are a few points to consider while designing cybersecurity in the energy industry.
Organizations must identify the systems, users, devices, data, and facilities that facilitate the daily business processes and aptly prioritize them. Further, they must align the essential security goals with the organization's business environment and governance to implement effective risk assessment tools and risk management strategies.
Energy companies must develop and deploy adequate protocols to ensure the delivery of critical infrastructure services. To do this, organizations must adequately segment, networks, patch systems, remove default or shared passwords, and supervise unauthorized access or activity.
Organizations must install appropriate tools and perform activities to determine the occurrence of a cybersecurity event. To pinpoint the lateral movement and credential theft, organizations must monitor both the perimeter and the network.
Energy providers must evaluate the current tools and their accuracy toward responding quickly. Detection tools help in generating substantial alerts, company-specific intelligence, and reducing response time. Detection tools that offer isolation, automated blocking, and threat hunting will accelerate incident response. Organizations must continually run pressure tests and processes to ensure familiarity.
The amount of information gathered upon attack detection dictates the degree of complication of the remediation process. Detection tools that capture indicators of compromise deliver tactics, techniques, and procedures save a significant amount of time where the attack began and the purpose of the attack. The accurate detection, response, and recovery processes in place can accelerate the security team’s ability to the depth of the breach.
As cyberattacks in the energy sector increase and become more sophisticated, a comprehensive security program has become very vital for cybersecurity in the energy industry.