Ensuring Data Integrity for Industrial IoT Systems: The Urgent Need for Full Stack, Zero Trust Networking


APRIL 2021

By: Chris Swan

The attack methodology for exploiting Industrial IoT (IIoT) continues to evolve as the attack surface widens with deployment of IIoT systems and devices. Automation, maintenance, and monitoring control systems deliver valuable benefits to industrial enterprises. These systems and devices depend on secure, scaled and reliable data networking. Adversaries are attacking the vulnerabilities of factories, utilities, public transportation, and other areas where connected devices and systems are proving to be the most vulnerable points of entry.

Built with IIoT in mind, Dispersive’s ultra-secure, private, and highly resilient technology can prevent industrial network attacks, accelerate performance while also securing every device, gateway and cloud endpoint.

As the world moves closer to controlling the pandemic, countries will begin to invest in digital infrastructure and innovation as part of the economic recovery. It is vital to address bigger and more distributed challenges at the edge where data is generated and the control systems that support them. It is equally vital to ensure that the data being collected and sent to the cloud through secure gateways is protected in motion, to prevent Man-in-the-Middle attacks and other threats.

Traditional point-to-point networking and security architectures, like VPNs and SD WAN, are cumbersome, complex and costly to own and operate in the IIoT environment – and they are failing. They were never designed for this level of architecture and security challenges. These traditional networking and security solutions struggle to support modern industrial companies. Legacy networks are static, inflexible, with security often siloed across multiple domains. Traditional solutions do not scale and actually slow down the business instead of enabling innovation and agility.

It is time to move to unified networking and security under a cloud-native framework that enables simplicity, agility, and lowers costs.

Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) is an emerging cybersecurity concept that Gartner described in their August 2019 report, “The Future of Network Security,” and one which begins to describe the technology Dispersive created and patented. SASE is the convergence of WAN (wide area networking) and Network Security into a single, cloud-delivered service model. Beyond SASE, Dispersive extends into IIoT and mobile devices to address the truly connected industrial operations of today.

Instead of managing network and security separately, Dispersive simplifies and unites these efforts while solving the scaling, security, flexibility, performance and cost containment challenges networks and enterprises face. The rapid expansion of data, computing, people, applications, services, IoT systems and edge computing entities accessing their digital assets from any device on any network, public and private, drives the urgency to protect and streamline these networks with an architecture built to meet this demand.

Dispersive’s SASE solution enables enterprises to manage network and security policies through a single console, making it easier and more efficient for IT teams and managed service providers to orchestrate, manage, and troubleshoot.

Given the scale of industrial facilities and the opportunity to connect many different facilities over increasingly distributed networks, we believe Dispersive is the ideal approach for IIoT deployments.

The Benefits of SASE

Traditional network architectures constrain digital innovation and transformation. With SASE, enterprises can effortlessly connect and manage physical locations, cloud resources, digital assets, and mobile via a SASE framework.  Network, IT and OT teams enjoy the agility of a unified network and security service managed through a single, self-service console.

  • Zero Trust: Complete session protection while removing trust assumptions in cloud deployments even when the user or device is connecting from off the network.
  • Increased Performance: SASE cloud architectures make any app, resource or other digital services is available to users easily, globally.
  • Reduced Complexity: A cloud-based network security stack service model reducing the number of security products an IT team must manage, update and maintain.
  • Greater Flexibility: holistic delivery of security services such as DNS security, next-gen firewall policies, and credential theft, data loss and threat prevention.
  • Greater Scalability: SASE enable enterprises to easily deploy, integrate, and manage new endpoints, apps, and services in an efficient and secure framework.
  • Data Protection: SASE data protection policies prevent unauthorized access and misuse of proprietary data.
  • Reduced Cost: SASE converts need to buy and manage multiple point products into a single platform dramatically reducing costs and IT resources.

Dispersive’s SASE solution improves security and performance while lowering total cost of ownership.

We are honored to be part of the Frontier Conference this week, given their track record and commitment to providing an annual gathering focused on industrial innovation.

SASE frameworks enable faster innovation, streamlining new product development cycles, making companies more responsive and reactive to market needs, business opportunities and the competition.





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