Manufacturing businesses are increasingly using technology to improve automation, productivity and efficiency. However, while new technologies can help a company run more efficiently, they also create risks if they need to be adequately secured.
This is especially true for the OT (operational technology) systems that run automated processes. Cybercriminals see these systems as easy targets because they are widely distributed and connected.
Identify Your Threats
You must first identify your threats to create robust cybersecurity for manufacturing businesses. These external factors could affect your business, such as peer companies’ relative strength or an industry-wide shortage of the materials you use to make your products.
Fortunately, a simple SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis can help you recognize these risks and identify strategies to combat them. This approach is also helpful if you are considering new technology or expanding into a new market.
While many manufacturers already use digital technologies to improve their operations, they must understand that these systems can also be vulnerable to cyber threats. Taking steps to improve security can help prevent a data breach or cyber attack from negatively impacting production, inventory and customer satisfaction.
Network infrastructure is one of the critical areas that manufacturers should focus on regarding cybersecurity. Many manufacturers still need updated technology and security updates to protect their networks against malicious actors.
In addition to network security, manufacturers need to consider how their networks interact with partners, vendors, shipping companies, investors and storage facilities. These parties have access to information that hackers can use to compromise a company’s infrastructure and network.
Invest in the Right Technology
Cyber security is an essential part of any business. It protects your data, company assets, and customers’ trust in you. A solid cyber security strategy is vital to your business’s success and profitability.
A solid cybersecurity strategy consists of a well-defined path to address future security requirements. It includes investing in the right technology, creating a security plan and training your employees on security best practices.
The right technology will improve your business’s efficiency and make it easier for your employees to do their jobs. It also helps you stay ahead of the competition and provide customers with the necessary products and services.
However, not all technology is created equal. There are many factors to consider when choosing the right one for your manufacturing business.
First, you need to determine the risks and implications of this technology on your business. This will help you decide whether it is worth the investment or not.
Second, you must choose technology compatible with your existing systems and infrastructure. This way, it will be easier for you to implement and keep up with changes in the industry.
Third, you must invest in technologies that can be used across multiple locations. This way, if you have a problem on your site, you can easily access the solution remotely and resolve it quickly.
Create a Security Plan
Manufacturing companies must create a robust cybersecurity strategy to protect their assets and data from threats. These companies often have valuable information that hackers seek to steal, such as business data, blueprints, and other important information about their production processes.
A strong security strategy should cover several different aspects of security. It includes a risk assessment, identifying the network assets that need to be safeguarded, and creating policies and procedures for protecting these network resources.
Depending on the industry, regulatory requirements may also be an issue. These guidelines might include HIPAA or GLBA, which have specific security measures that must be followed.
Cybersecurity strategies should also consider protecting sensitive data and inventory in storage and preventing network access breaches from outside the organization. This is especially true for manufacturers that handle healthcare, financial, or other sensitive data.
Many manufacturers still need to formalize a plan for cybersecurity, which means their employees are only sometimes aware of the risks they face and how to stay safe. This makes them vulnerable to attack and leaves their companies open to a wide range of potential cyber vulnerabilities, including data loss, hacker attacks, and intellectual property theft.
Creating a solid cybersecurity strategy for your manufacturing business should be essential to stay caught up in today’s technology-driven world. It can help your company stay ahead of its competition, increase employee safety and reduce costs by ensuring you have the right technology to protect your business.
Train Your Employees
Manufacturing companies have an array of valuable data that hackers are interested in. This includes client information, intellectual property, production processes and more.
As a result, they are often an ideal target for cyberattacks. This can lead to various problems, including identity theft and significant ransomware incidents that could disrupt production.
One way to prevent cybersecurity issues is to train your employees. This can include introducing new hires, educating staff on what to do after an attack and reviewing their security habits.
It’s also essential to create a database of all your cyber incidents. This will help you identify weaknesses in your security and make your training program more effective.
You should also provide incentives for your employees to protect the company from cyberattacks. Reward them with extra time off or bonuses for reporting phishing attacks, finding bugs and vulnerabilities, and preventing other cyber incidents.
Lastly, ensuring that your IT team is well-trained and updated on the latest security measures is crucial. This can be accomplished through various training programs, including virtual and in-person boot camps. These programs can be especially beneficial for those working in the IT department or as security analysts.