Energy companies more focused on cyber security with increased price of oil
In recent months, more U.S. oil company boards have demanded IT managers prove refineries and drilling rigs are protected against cyberattacks, the chief of a security firm says.These moves look prudent considering the recent ransomware attacks around the world. Those with the know how to defeat these attacks will be in demand. In the UK a 22-year-old IT professional discovered how to defeat the attacks with relatively little cost.
Rising oil prices and increased awareness of industrial cyber threats seem to have spurred new corporate-level maneuvers this year to secure computer controls that run energy facilities, said Barak Perelman, chief executive of Israeli cyber security firm Indegy. At some oil companies, he said, chief information security officers now spend a quarter of their monthly security committee meetings discussing so-called industrial control systems, the devices that control oil and gas equipment.
Perelman, who moved from Israel to New York this year because of increasing demand for industrial cyber security in the United States, said he spends most of his time teaching IT professionals how to tackle the security of devices manufactured by Siemens, Honeywell and Emerson – so different from the Microsoft and Apple computers they know well.