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Breakthrough solution from Invensys advances industrial cyber security

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Invensys Operations Management (Australia)  has teamed with Byres Security and MTL Instruments to deliver a new cyber security solution. The new Triconex / TofinoTM OPC firewall will harden industrial safety systems against network accidents and attacks. It is the first firewall that protects integrated applications based on OPC Classic, the world’s most widely used industrial integration protocol.

To enable greater interoperability of its Triconex safety systems, Invensys pioneered embedding OPC servers within its Tricon communications module (TCM). To ensure that these modules were cyber secure, Invensys teamed with Byres Security, which had recently introduced the world’s first content inspection firewall for the MODBUS TCP protocol as part of Byres Security’s Tofino product line, in order to create a firewall specifically for Triconex systems. The two companies then enlisted the services of MTL Instruments to build the security hardware. The result is the Triconex / Tofino OPC firewall, which is now available for Invensys customers using the Triconex TCM with the embedded OPC solution.

The Triconex / Tofino OPC firewall provides security features developed specifically for Triconex and its embedded OPC Classic server to protect against malicious attacks and other threats to network operations. Users deploy the new firewall in front of the Triconex OPC server, thwarting attacks and traffic storms before they reach the safety and critical control system. It automatically mitigates risks related to previously published DCOM vulnerabilities, while providing packet management and rate limiting to prevent network traffic problems that could have an adverse effect on the stability of the safety system.

For many companies, good network reliability, like that provided by the Triconex / Tofino OPC firewall, is just as important as good security, and with its unique features and capabilities, the Triconex / Tofino OPC firewall can help avoid multi-million dollar accidents and untold environmental damage.

“Past plant shutdowns, for example, haven’t been caused by hackers. Instead they were the result of badly configured software causing traffic storms that impacted critical controllers and other systems,” said Eric Byres, security expert and technical officer at Byres Security. “The Triconex / Tofino OPC firewall does much more than block hackers and viruses from accessing the safety system. Its dynamic port management and built-in traffic-rate controls prevent many basic network problems from spreading throughout a plant.”

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