In brief

In brief

  • Changes to the industrial equipment landscape mean new ways of doing business, which means new ways of securing the business in cyberspace.
  • Accenture research shows 13% of industrial equipment companies—Leaders—are more secure in the cyber realm than peers, without spending more money.
  • Leaders are using new technologies to detect breaches faster. They’re scaling those technologies. They’re collaborating to share knowledge of threats.
  • Companies that adopt adaptive cybersecurity, like Leaders, will be better suited for an industry steeped in the Internet of Things and ecosystems.

As business changes, so should cybersecurity

The industrial equipment industry is now steeped in the Internet of Things (IoT) and the ecosystems that create products-as-a-service. As industrial equipment increasingly becomes a web of smart, connected products and services, companies must work in new ways. The cybersecurity around these products and services needs to change to fit the environment.

An adaptive security approach helps make companies more cyber resilient, given the increased number of remote workers and ecosystem partners within any one business.

Our research shows three out of every four industrial equipment companies (74%) report that the cost of staying ahead of cyber attackers is unsustainable. Finding new, cost-effective ways to keep your company secure and resilient in the cyber realm needs to happen sooner rather than later.

Recent Accenture research shows 13% of industrial equipment companies are more secure in the cyber realm than their peers. These Leaders achieve significantly higher performance than their industry peers in at least three of four basic areas, without spending any more money:

Detection rate

Leaders stop more cyberattacks.

Speed of detection

Leaders find breaches faster.

Speed of response

Leaders fix breaches faster.

Reduced breach impact

Leaders contain a breach better.

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Cyber resilience is the ability to defend against attacks while continuing to do "business as usual" successfully.

What do leaders do differently?

We found four areas Leaders approach differently from other companies, which are contributing to their cyber resilience.

#1 Leaders prioritize advanced technology investments. Artificial Intelligence (AI), Next-Generation Firewall (NGF) and Risk-Based Authentication (RBA), among other advanced technologies, go a long way toward fortifying cybersecurity in today’s partner-based business models. AI is the top technology investment by Leaders.

#2 Speed matters. Industrial equipment cybersecurity Leaders know speed matters, but they approach speed from multiple angles: detection speed, response time, and recovery/restoration speed. All three areas are crucial to not just cybersecurity, but also to cyber resilience over the longer term.

#3 Leaders scale more. It’s no coincidence that Leaders are 4X better defending against attacks—they scale security technologies significantly more than their peers. More than half of Leaders (51%) scale half or more of their security tools throughout the enterprise, which provides them with a much broader base of protection.

#4 Cybersecurity is a team sport. Leaders are more tapped in, not only to business partners but also to the industry security community.

Main ways organizations that are best at collaborating work with partners.

Moving toward adaptive cybersecurity

Leaders are blazing a trail other companies can follow, with an imitable example of how it’s done. They’re partnering with the business side of the house to evolve cybersecurity as the business evolves.

To follow in their footsteps, industrial equipment companies need to broaden their scope with adaptive security. They’ll need to look beyond the basics and into areas where the business has moved into new frontiers, requiring broader, deeper or newer types of protection:

Protect factory systems in real time

Secure adoption of cloud services will help protect industrial factory systems, as security can be updated in real time in the cloud.

Extend protection to the entire enterprise

Protections now must be built into the entire enterprise, from IT/OT network anomaly detection to vulnerability management.

Create partner cybersecurity standards

Industrial equipment companies need to monitor not only their own cybersecurity, but ensure partners adhere to strict standards of adaptive security.

Focus on cybersecurity for connected products

Detection and response capabilities are crucial to protecting the products of industrial manufacturers and the entire industrial internet of things.

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Cyber resilience: A journey, not a destination

Cyber resilience is not a one-and-done endeavor. Because the threat landscape is always changing, as is technology, it’s a continuous process. As industrial equipment companies settle into a changed landscape during and post-COVID-19, they are experimenting with many new ways of doing business. And with those new ways of doing business come new ways of securing the business in the cyber realm.

Many companies are already on the road to better cyber resilience, but COVID-19 accelerates that journey, making it all the more important.

We’re here to help.

About the Authors

Daniela Altamirano

Security Consulting Senior Manager

Benjamin Janzer

Security Consulting Senior Manager

Ganesh Narayanan

Application Development Associate Manager

Lars Zywietz

Security Executive


2020 Cyber Threatscape Report: Executive summary
From survival to revival: Industrial post COVID-19

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