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Industry 4.0, digitalization dominate 2019 Hannover Messe

Surrounded by a bustling fair illuminating the theme of "Integrated Industry - Industrial Intelligence," the excitement and energy overflowed at the 2019 Hannover Messe. With 6,500 exhibitors from 75 countries and 215,000 attendees from 95 nations, the event featured Sweden as the partner country and hosted over 80 forums and conferences highlighting a host of new digitalization trends and technologies. This year's event revealed a number of organizations focused on providing standards and information to assist the modernization and digital transformation of manufacturers.

Open Industry 4.0 Alliance: Some of the biggest news was the announcement of The Open Industry 4.0 Alliance, a collaboration with the goal of overcoming proprietary solutions. The charter of the organization is to create customer value through holistic interoperable Industry 4.0 solutions and services in a common framework powered by an alliance of industry partners for the digitization of the factory, plant, and warehouse. Founders and members endorse an open ecosystem and commit to using an Open Industry 4.0 Alliance Framework to achieve interoperability that provides attractive opportunities for companies of all sizes. A major end goal is to have machines in a given smart factory speak the same language.

5G Alliance for Connected Industries and Automation (5G-ACIA): This global forum, prominently seen throughout Hannover Messe 2019 halls, was formed to address, discuss, and evaluate the technical, regulatory, and business aspects of fifth-generation (5G) cellular network technology for industrial applications. The dominant objective of 5G-ACIA is the best possible applicability of this wireless communications technology for connected industries. 5G-ACIA works to ensure that the interests and specific aspects of the industrial domain are adequately considered in 5G standardization and regulation. It encompasses stakeholder groups including operational technology, information and communication technology, and academic groups or associations.

New wave suppliers: Since the Industry 4.0 topic was first explored at Hannover Messe 2011, there has been an influx of new wave exhibitors and presenters reflecting the transition to digitalization. Hannover Messe 2019 continued to see the traditional industrial suppliers exhibit and show off new products, but there has been a change. The booths of high-technology companies-including Amazon, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, IBM, Dell, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Huawei, Dassault Systèmes, CISCO, and PTC-have gotten bigger and more prominent. New high-tech companies, either upstarts or those crossing over from computer/IoT applications, are also increasingly bringing value to manufacturing.
— By Bill Lydon, InTech  

Transportation sector reveals risks of connected OT networks

Time to market is an essential competitive edge in a digital marketplace that has placed growing pressure on the rapid delivery of goods. In addition to developing new products and services, success today depends upon new functions like DevSecOps teams and agile software development, more speed and bandwidth, on-demand infrastructures spanning multicloud environments to manage big data, and hyperconnectivity across data and resources.

Few places are experiencing more of the cyberimpact of this new business model than the operational technology (OT) transportation sector. Organized cybercriminals have actively exploited container shipping companies and container port operators. By hacking Internet-connected OT systems, cybercriminals have accessed ICS-based cargo systems to redirect containers or make them disappear off the grid entirely. They access aircraft systems by breaking into Internet-connected OT subsystems such as communication, maintenance, catering, and baggage handling.

Although OT systems do not present the sort of personal data value that many traditional cybercriminals seek, targeting critical infrastructure still has huge appeal. Cybercriminal agendas include holding a critical system hostage, manipulating a stock price, or even operating as a cyber "hit man" as a competitive strategy. The following examples show vulnerabilities in today's transportation systems.

Satellite/Internet communications: Navigation and cargo systems are increasingly connected to satellite and Internet communication, escalating cyberrisk. In 2013, a University of Austin student participating in a sanctioned experiment aboard an $80M yacht spoofed the navigation system, steering the ship off course.

Advanced persistent threats: APTs are a clear and present danger to the transportation industry. Compromised ticketing and scheduling systems, for example, can shut down transportation hubs. Airlines security experts agree that more intelligence across the cyber kill-chain must be shared between carriers, but this requires public-private cooperation that does not currently exist.

Phishing attacks: The impact can be severe when cybercriminals execute a masquerade attack and gain network privilege, but the attacks are difficult to execute. Once a cyberattacker has access, the threat can extend to IT resources.

Espionage: According to one report, 47 percent of malware aimed at manufacturers was intended to steal intellectual property. According to the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences, 21 percent of manufacturers lost intellectual property as a result.
— By Rick Peters, Fortinet

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