Shifting Cybersecurity Policies Hinder Comprehensive Critical Infrastructure Protection

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4Q 2018 | IN-5241


Poor Efforts for Protecting Smart Utilities


Cybersecurity spending on utilities infrastructure (energy, water, and wastewater) globally is low, fragmented, and inconsistent. In 2018, ABI Research forecasts such spending to average US$8 billion globally; this represents less than 10% of total spending on critical infrastructure cybersecurity. Spending on utilities is not as dynamic as in some other sectors—notably, defense, financial services, and Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs). This is due in part to the slow-moving nature of grid modernization; the difficulty of integrating security into legacy industrial control systems and newer connected operational technologies; the lack of skills and know-how in the sectors; and the low priority placed on security by stakeholders in the sector.

The surge in adoption of smart assets for utilitiesintroduces new risks to the infrastructure. Electrical and water grids are especially vulnerable. The poisoning of a wate...

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