Security of SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) and other industrial control systems (ICSs) is a complex subject, and one that has received much attention in recent years. While modern industrial control systems use many of the same computers, operating systems and networking components as conventional business networks, the two kinds of networks are managed very differently.


Safety is the highest priority at every industrial site, and transportation sites are no different. Thousands of passengers that commute on a daily basis aren’t aware of the complex systems that operate behind their successful travel. Railroad control, radars and more are all based on ICS. Poor security of these systems can lead to a catastrophic outcome. Safety is always our first priority, and reliability is our second.


Business networks are under constant attack. How do professionals deal with this constant, pervasive threat? In part, they deal with it through constant, aggressive change. “Stay ahead of the bad guys.” Update anti-virus signatures several times per day. Apply the latest vendor security updates within two days of the vendor’s release.


This is the exact opposite of how control system networks are managed. Control system networks are generally configured to be unable to exchange information directly with the Internet, and so are not under constant attack. The biggest risk to industrial networks is the connection to the business network.


Waterfall Security Solutions’ Unidirectional Security Gateways offer a solution which increases confidence in protection of safety, integrity and availability of the operations network. The gateways are a hardware-based solution which permits information to flow out of the operations network, without allowing any attacks, messages or information back in.