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Oil & Gas Cybersecurity and Process Safety Converge Thanks to TRITON
In 2017, a Middle Eastern petrochemical facility had the unfortunate distinction of being the first known victim of malware specifically targeted at process safety systems. Thanks to TRITON, the oil and gas industry became ground zero for the convergence of SIS process safety and ICS cybersecurity. Suddenly, the relatively obscure world of process safety systems, which had never seriously been considered a cyber vulnerability, was in the spotlight. Process safety systems are designed to be safe, but not necessarily cyber-secure. The oil and gas industry, from upstream applications, such as oilfields and offshore platforms, to downstream applications, such as refining and petrochemicals, have the largest installed base of process safety systems by a wide margin, and thus are most at risk. The TRITON/TRISIS/HatMan malware incident proved that the worlds of process safety and industrial control systems should be looked at holistically, not just from the standpoint of potential cyber-threats. This requires a unified approach to monitoring control system and process safety assets and applying the large body of knowledge that exists in the process safety domain to the world of ICS cybersecurity.
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