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Cisco Partners: Deploying Manufacturing IoT Infrastructures – Data, Policy, Security

- March 28, 2018 - 0 Comments

Manufacturers depend on an ecosystem of partners to implement IoT solutions.  Partners provide support for different tiers of a solution that ultimately produces significant business value.

  • Some Cisco partners manage the Enterprise side of a manufacturers infrastructure and may be engaged in the extension of enterprise data, policy, and security protocols in the Operations infrastructure.
  • Others manage the solutions being implemented to take data from point of origin to use in real-time remediation procedure, improvement in OEE, etc.
  • Others use their operations expertise to implement solutions within the customers operations infrastructure that combine controls, safety, and motion requirements with new systems that improve productivity and generate significant new value.

Many of these solutions focus first on Data, Policy and Security.

Start with the Network:

*63% of executives believe it will be critical over the next two years to leverage customer hardware and hardware accelerators to meet the computing demands of intelligent environments.

*83% of executives agree that edge architecture will speed the maturity of many technologies.

*Source: Accenture – TECHNOLOGY VISION 2018

Cisco partners are deploying edge infrastructure to address common manufacturing data applications.  NeoSilica is one such partner:

“ Smart utilities require secure connectivity and computing, and NeoSilica, which builds IoT solutions for the energy and utilities industry, evaluated and selected Cisco’s IOx application framework as the foundation for rapid development and deployment of their solutions globally.”

— Satyam Bheemarasetti CEO

NeoSilica offers industrial IoT-based monitoring and management solutions for energy and utility customers using a platform of industrial IoT, cloud software, and analytics. NeoSilica based its offering on the Cisco® IoT System, combining secure connectivity, application execution in the fog, and highly scalable distributed analytics.  These solutions include:

  • Cisco IR 809 router and Cisco Industrial Ethernet Switches (IoT connectivity)
  • Cisco IOx (fog application execution environment, network controls and security)
  • NeoSilica energy monitoring and automation (fog application)
  • NeoSilica Utility cloud application

 Cisco partners are often confronted with the challenge of bringing together IT and OT resources within the customer organization to collaboratively address the need for next-generation infrastructures.  We look at this challenge as having two components:

Intent and Visibility

Where OT and IT can work together to solve problems it often starts with giving both team a way to visualize and express intent.

Visibility – Managing data, implementing policy, and enforcing security in the process network requires these systems to have visibility to plant floor assets within the context of observed behaviors.

Intent – Intent-based networking systems (IBNS) provide a new way to build and operate networks that improve network availability and agility, compared to traditional approaches (Gartner).  Maintaining intent effectively requires dynamic security, policy, and data application triggered by OT intent without dependency on IT for day to day operations.

Cisco partners are deploying solutions today that leverage the value of intent and visibility to integrate Cisco technologies like ISE, Stealthwatch and IND for customers.  Cisco partners are deploying intent-based infrastructure on factory floors to create efficient, reliable, secure Iot solutions.  INS in the US and HOPF in Germany are two such partners.  They both specializes in designing, deploying and providing on-going support for critical OT (Operational Technology) and IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) networks.

Security

Today, embedded, mobile, and cyberphysical systems are ubiquitous and used in many applications, from industrial control systems, modern vehicles, to critical infrastructure.  Current trends and initiatives, such as “Industrie 4.0” and Internet of Things (IoT), promise business models and user experiences through connectivity and effective use of next generation of embedded devices.

Cisco partners are bringing both OT and IT skillsets to meeting the evolving requirements of manufacturing customers to address there security framework.

For example:

Re-define global protection –  George Michalitsianos inherited a tall task when joining Ansell. The Board of Directors had made cybersecurity a priority to make sure it reduced its intellectual property and technology risks through beefed up security.  The Cisco partner started with updating Ansell’s its network with Cisco solutions for threat-focused, next-generation security.  Ansell would benefit from the Cisco Security

Enterprise Licensing Agreement (ELA) giving them access to all of the security solutions needed for one-third of the cost of purchasing everything separately, which allowed them to bring on security solutions they never had before.

Using the automated security capabilities integrated across multiple Cisco security products, such as Cisco Advanced Malware Protection (AMP), Cloud Web Security (CWS), and Cloud Email Security(CES), Ansell can now block thousands, of advanced and known threats daily, stopping phishing attacks, ransomware, and known malicious actors.

Consider contacting your Cisco ecosystem partner for a security readiness assessment.

To learn more about Cisco’s partners implementing data, policy and security manufacturing solutions, please contact your Cisco partner.

 

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