IT Security in Industrial Remote Access

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Introduction

With remote access, a user connects to a control system (PLC, CNC) or an operator device like an HMI (human-machine interface) over the Internet from an arbitrary location. This user can then have process data displayed or can intervene in the control program. Control systems are typically not designed with IT security in mind. Once a user has successfully connected to an unprotected control, they can access the rest of the corporate network relatively easily. This kind of access must be blocked, however. Accordingly, control systems or other devices provided for production lines or machinery need to be protected with appropriate IT security safeguards before they are connected to the Internet. Effective IT security systems for remote access work on two levels. On the one hand, they manage access rights for machinery or the corresponding remote access endpoints. This makes sure that only authorized users gain access to these machines. In addition, IT security measures need to protect against more wide-ranging cyberattacks from outside the company. This involves making appropriate structural and organizational changes – both in terms of hardware and software. IT security models are a fundamental part of achieving the right level of IT security in a company. The earlier that this topic is covered in the design and planning of the machine or production line, the greater the protection that can be offered by the final security model. This white paper first takes a look at the basic working principles of the remote access system provided by Red Lion. This is followed by a detailed presentation of the relevant components in terms of their security aspects, plus a solution strategy designed to meet the strictest IT security standards.

Please download Whitepaper, click here.