BlackBerry Limited has today released the BlackBerry Manufacturing Cybersecurity Study, with a warning that outdated and unsupported legacy operational technologies (OT) are exposing substantial vulnerabilities for UK manufacturers facing escalating threats from nation-state attacks.
The survey of 250 manufacturing IT decision makers across the UK revealed that while many (35 percent) anticipate an elevated risk of cyber attack in 2023, three-quarters of respondents (69 percent) fear nation-state attacks on the sector and 64 percent are concerned about foreign governments spying on their facilities. At the same time, 69 percent say OT infrastructure is difficult to defend.
Shishir Singh, Chief Technology Officer, Cybersecurity at BlackBerry, says: “Global manufacturers are headed for stormy waters as nation states up the ante on surveillance and the risk of a cyber incident is high – and rising – yet the industry is hampered by a threat surface that is largely antiquated and difficult to defend. Over the last year, three cyber security trends significantly impacted OT and IoT infrastructure: ransomware attacks, phishing attacks, and third-party software vulnerabilities.”
“Cyber security has become a significant barrier to progress, and managers shackled by aging hardware and outdated operating systems are challenged to unify security across old and new to forge ahead with modernisation. With aged and isolated equipment, the truth is that it is difficult to put protection into these environments. But not impossible, and with a lightweight footprint and OS agnostic solution, protection can be extended to every eligible endpoint to mitigate this exposure across manufacturing infrastructure,” Singh continues.