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No less than half of industrial companies are not well prepared for possible cyber attacks. This is evident from a study that Fortinet commissioned from Forrester Consulting.

Due to increasing digitisation, these companies are more vulnerable than ever. The companies recognise the importance of cyber security, but continue to encounter obstacles.

Greater threat from digitisation

More and more industrial companies are using digitisation on the factory floor, among other things to improve efficiency and to gain more insight into production processes. 66% of companies report that their factories use IP networks.

These networks increase the area of attack within companies, making them more vulnerable to cyber attacks. Only half of the industrial companies indicated that the machines in the workplace are well equipped to repel cyber attacks.

Lack of cooperation between IT and OT environments

In addition to the high threat threat, Fortinet’s investigation revealed that industrial control systems are at risk due to the lack of cooperation between the managers of IT and OT environments. 51% of the respondents indicated that both teams operate independently of each other.

The OT team takes care of business-critical industrial equipment and any OT security solutions. The IT team only manages the security of the IT environment. However, 91% of companies indicated that machine security on the factory floor should be a shared responsibility between the IT and OT teams.

Improved convergence and collaboration between the IT and IT teams can help companies reduce duplication of effort and workflows. In addition, it provides an improved overview of how to combat cyber threats.

Fortinet says that industrial companies need to make changes on an operational level. According to the security specialist, the gap between IT and IT environments needs to be closed in order to build mutual trust between the two teams. As the attack surface grows, IT and OT teams must join forces to improve visibility and provide more effective protection against cyber threats.