ISA Global Cybersecurity Alliance Sets Priorities for 2021

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The ISA Global Cybersecurity Alliance (ISAGCA), made up of 40 member companies, has established its priorities for the year ahead.

The ISA Global Cybersecurity Alliance (ISAGCA), made up of 40 member companies, has established its priorities for the year ahead. The International Society of Automation (http://www.isa.org) created the ISA Global Cybersecurity Alliance to advance cybersecurity readiness and awareness in manufacturing and critical infrastructure facilities and processes. The ISAGCA brings end-user companies, automation and control systems providers, IT infrastructure providers, services providers, and system integrators and other cybersecurity stakeholder organizations together to proactively address growing threats.

The group’s 2021 priorities include:

  • Advocating the inclusion of the ISA/IEC 62443 series of cybersecurity standards in global policies that intend to improve critical infrastructure cybersecurity
  • Publishing a fully detailed, auditable cross-referencing guide that maps the ISA/IEC 62443 series of standards to other cybersecurity standards across multiple industries
  • Issuing comparison analysis reports that identify the implications of selecting and applying the ISA/IEC 62443 series of standards and help minimize the effort it takes to comply with cybersecurity standards and policies
  • Creating an insurance underwriters’ work group that will determine how to leverage ISA/IEC 62443 in creating and adjusting cybersecurity-related insurance policies
  • Publishing a two-part report that analyzes the use of ISA/IEC 62443 to secure IIoT reference architectures: Phase 1 (Securing IIoT devices and gateways) and Phase 2 (Securing cloud-based system-level functionality)
  • Formalizing recommended best practices to improve cyber incident response plans, in collaboration with the ICS4ICS public-private partnership tasked with creating an incident command system for industrial control systems
  • Making available a slate of new educational training, including an operations technology-focused course on basic cybersecurity hygiene for technicians and operators and microlearning modules about cybersecurity principles and the basics of the ISA/IEC 62443 series of standards

“The technologies that control and automate the world’s most critical operations, including the facilities where we work and live, are under constant threat and attack,” said ISAGCA Advisory Board Chair Megan Samford, Vice President and Chief Product Security Officer for Schneider Electric’s Energy Management business. “Given how important the ISA/IEC 62443 standard has become to limiting, mitigating, and even eliminating these threats, the projects and programs we have launched within the ISA Global Cybersecurity Alliance this year will deliver clarity, alignment, and education and further our collective ability to improve control and automation systems cybersecurity.”

The ANSI/ISA 62443 series of automation and control systems cybersecurity standards, which were developed primarily by ISA, have been adopted by the International Electrotechnical Commission as IEC 62443 and endorsed by the United Nations. The standards define requirements and procedures for implementing electronically secure automation and industrial control systems and security practices and assessing electronic security performance. The standards approach the cybersecurity challenge holistically, bridging the gap between operations and information technology.

“Consistent, global adoption of the ISA/IEC 62443 series of standards will help vendors, third parties, end users—indeed the entire digital supply chain—effectively and proactively manage risks to their people, assets, and operations,” said ISAGCA Advisory Board Vice Chair Sharul Rashid, Custodian Engineer and Group Technical Authority of Instrumentation and Control at PETRONAS. “The march of digital technology and open process automation initiatives means global industry continues to advance at great pace. But in our haste to reap the benefits of digitalization, we must not lose sight of cybersecurity as a key piece of the productivity puzzle. Our priorities this year will help keep global focus on securing critical assets from harm.”

Recently, the ISA Global Cybersecurity Alliance released two helpful, free guides for public use:

  • Quick Start Guide: An Overview of the ISA/IEC 62443 Standards (http://www.isa.org/cyberguide): A user-friendly overview answering often-asked questions about ISA/IEC 62443 series of standards
  • Security Lifecycles in the ISA/IEC 62443 Series (http://www.isa.org/securitylifecycles): A whitepaper that provides a high-level view of the product security lifecycle and the automation solution security lifecycle, and defines IACS principal roles and responsibilities

ISAGCA is made up of 40 member companies, representing more than $240 billion in aggregate revenue across more than 2,400 combined worldwide locations. Automation and cybersecurity provider members serve 31 different industries, underscoring the broad applicability of the ISA/IEC 62443 series of standards.

Current members of ISAGCA include 1898 & Co. (Burns McDonnell), ACET Solutions, aeSolutions, Bayshore, Claroty, ConsoleWorks, CyberOwl, Deloitte, Digital Immunity, Dragos, Eaton, Exida, Honeywell, Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho State University, ISASecure, Johnson Controls, KPMG, LOGIIC, Mission Secure, MTA Technology Group (Senhasegura), Munio Security, Nova Systems, Nozomi Networks, PAS, PETRONAS, Radiflow, Rockwell Automation, Schneider Electric, Surge Engineering, Tenable, TI Safe, Tripwire, UL, Wallix, WisePlant, WINICSSEC, and Xage Security.

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