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Addressing Cyber Physical Security

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Perry Pederson is concerned. About the Internet of Things (IoT). About cyber physical security. And about how information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) are addressed in modern manufacturing.

Following his presentation at the [MC]2 Conference, Pederson sat down with IMTSTV to talk about his concerns and to offer suggestions for how manufacturing leaders can address them.

A 33-year veteran of the U.S. government, Perry spent his career protecting critical infrastructure against cyber attacks at the Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Perry now focuses on protecting critical infrastructure from a private sector perspective as the co-founder and managing principal of The Langner Group, LLC.

According to Pederson, the fact that information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) are substantially different must be understood to address the problem of OT insecurity. Pederson explained that while everyone believes they understand IT, OT is what is happening in the background that no one sees or thinks about.

Pederson emphasized that OT is much more connected to the physical world than IT. If someone hacks an OT system, he said, that has the potential to alter the physical world. For instance, heating and cooling systems, automatic locks and various other systems we take for granted could be vulnerable to attack.

Finally, Pederson highlighted the fact that cyber physical security is an engineering problem that must be addressed by qualified professionals armed with the correct tools to manage the OT environment.

For more information about the [MC]2 Conference, visit mc2conference.com.


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