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International Society of Automation announces new cybersecurity alliance


July 26, 2019
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

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July 26, 2019 – The International Society of Automation (ISA) has revealed the founding members of its new Global Cybersecurity Alliance (GCA), which will work to advance cybersecurity readiness and awareness in manufacturing and critical infrastructure facilities and processes.

The alliance, comprised of the ISA, Schneider Electric, Rockwell Automation, Honeywell, Johnson Controls, Claroty and Nozomi Networks, 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.

“Cybersecurity is critical to digital transformation. It’s critical not only for the protection of information and intellectual property, but also for the protection of physical assets, the environment, and worker safety,” says Blake Moret, CEO of Rockwell Automation. “Our engagement with the Global Cybersecurity Alliance will be another important step in our efforts to help customers identify and mitigate risks.”

ISA is the developer of the ANSI/ISA 62443 series of automation and control systems cybersecurity standards, which 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. 

Leveraging the ISA/IEC 62443 standards, the Global Cybersecurity Alliance plans to increase awareness and expertise, share knowledge and information, and develop best practice tools to help companies navigate the entire lifecycle of cybersecurity protection. GCA will work closely with government agencies, regulatory bodies and stakeholder organizations around the world.

“Accelerating and expanding globally relevant standards, certification and education programs will increase workforce competence, and help end users identify gaps, reduce risks, and ensure they have the tools and systems they need to protect their facilities and installations,” says Mary Ramsey, ISA executive director, in a release. “Through the proliferation of standards and compliance programs, we will strengthen our global cyber culture and transform the way industry identifies and manages cybersecurity threats and vulnerabilities to their operations.”

The first founding members of GCA are multi-national, industrial technology providers with deep expertise in technology and applications, and they’ll apply their experience and knowledge to accomplish the alliance’s priorities. The alliance was initiated by discussions with Schneider Electric, and expanded to include the other members.

The GCA is seeking additional members to support its initiatives. End-user companies, asset owners, automation and control systems providers, IT infrastructure providers, services providers, and system integrators and other cybersecurity stakeholder organizations are invited to join. Annual contributions to fund initiatives are based on company revenues and are tax-deductible.

“Over the last few years, global industry has recognized that taking on increasingly dangerous cyber risks can’t be limited to a single company, segment, or region. However, until now, there has been limited ability to respond as a unified whole to these worldwide threats,” says Klaus Jaeckle, chief product security officer for Schneider Electric. “But by establishing an open, collaborative and transparent body, with a focus on strengthening people, processes, and technology, we can drive true cultural change.”