NEW CYBERSECURITY RESEARCH REVEALS THAT USB DEVICES POSE A SIGNIFICANT THREAT

  Enquire / contact me

A wide variety of facilities – not just critical infrastructure – were actively targeted

NEW CYBERSECURITY RESEARCH REVEALS THAT USB DEVICES POSE A SIGNIFICANT THREAT
NEW CYBERSECURITY RESEARCH REVEALS THAT USB DEVICES POSE A SIGNIFICANT THREAT

New, first-of-its-kind research released by Honeywell shows that removable USB media devices such as flash drives pose a significant – and intentional – cybersecurity threat to a wide array of industrial process control networks. 

Severe Threats for a wide range of sites

Data derived from Honeywell technology used to scan and control USB devices at 50 customer locations showed that nearly half (44 percent) detected and blocked at least one file with a security issue. It also revealed that 26 percent of the detected threats were capable of significant disruption by causing operators to lose visibility or control of their operations. The threats targeted a wide variety of industrial sites, including refineries, chemical plants and pulp-and-paper manufacturers around the world, and the threats themselves ranged in severity. About 1 in 6 targeted industrial control systems or Internet of Things (IoT) devices. 

“The data showed much more serious threats than we expected, and taken together, the results indicate that a number of these threats were targeted and intentional,” said Eric Knapp, director of strategic innovation, Honeywell Industrial Cyber Security. “This research confirms what we have suspected for years – USB threats are real for industrial operators. What is surprising is the scope and severity of the threats, many of which can lead to serious and dangerous situations at sites that handle industrial processes.”

No reliable detection by traditional anti-malware technology in some cases

The research marks the first commercial report to focus exclusively on USB security in industrial control environments. It examined data collected from Honeywell’s Secure Media Exchange (SMX) technology, which is specifically designed to scan and control removable media, including USB drives. Among the threats detected were high-profile, well-known issues such as TRITON and Mirai, as well as variants of Stuxnet, an attack type previously leveraged by nation-states to disrupt industrial operations. In comparative tests, up to 11 percent of the threats discovered were not reliably detected by more traditional anti-malware technology. “Customers already know these threats exist, but many believe they aren’t the targets of these high-profile attacks,” Knapp said. “This data shows otherwise and underscores the need for advanced systems to detect these threats.”

The research, which is presented in the Honeywell Industrial USB Threat Report, recommends that operators combine people training, process changes, and technical solutions to reduce the risk of USB threats across industrial facilities.  
 

Posted on November 5, 2018 - (30 views)
Related articles
Automating Functions. Simplifying Operations. Modernizing Protection.
Intrinsically Safe Gas Imaging Camera FLIR GFx320
Innovate, Develop, Build
Innovate, Develop, Build
HANNAY Works Here: Reels for Food and Beverage
Adipec 2018: 12 - 15 November 2018
Keep Your Machines Running! Permanently
On-line Turbidity Measurement
DonadonSSD: The Italian Manufacturer of Rupture Discs Ensures Maximum Safety Against Overpressure
EI: Intrinsically Safe Pressure Transmitter
Super High Response Speed Servo Valve
Safe Pressure Transmitter
Magnetostrictive Linear Displacement Transducer
EE310 RH/T Transmitter
In-Situ Calibration Verification System
Piezoresistive Pressure Transmitters
Pneumatic Stoppers
Leak Detection Technology Prevents Power Outages
Calibration Instrument LS3300
Battery Powered Digital Rate and Total Flow Indicator
Reliable Flow Measurement
Digitalization will be the Number 1 Trend at ADIPEC 2018
Detecting Fluorinated Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Efficient Supply and Transport of Goods
Vial and Bottle Labeller
Spiral Retaining Ring
Safe Detection of Carbon Monoxide Leaks
Portable Area Lighting System 9455Z0 RALS
Pneumatic Stoppers
Fire and Gas Damper