India is high on the agenda of Russia-based global cyber security solutions provider Kaspersky as industrial units in the country are expected to go in for greater automation and hence get exposed to bigger cyber threats that may disrupt the operations of critical infrastructure.
These views were expressed by top officials of the Kaspersky attending the three-day conference on Industrial Cyber Security here.
“India is in a very great stage of development and is of great importance to Kaspersky," said Vladimir Dashchenko, ICS CERT Vulnerability Research, Kaspersky.
He argued that as more and more companies would increase their dependence on IT, they would need to take adequate steps to guard against disruptions caused by cyber attacks.
"Smart cities, energy companies, industrial units engaged in providing critical infrastructure, new generation cars face different types of cyber threats and vulnerabilities. Disruptions in services caused by cyber attacks can be expensive. Hence it would be imperative for them to gurad against such vulnerabilities,” he said.
Dashchenko regretted that many companies engaged in providing key infrastructure services are not yet fully alive to the cyber threats that have the potential to cripple the control systems causing physical and financial damages.
At individual level, he added, the people ought to be educated what he termed as “cyber hygiene”. These would include simple steps like adopting difficult passwords, changing them frequently, updating software etc. “These steps can help in effectively dealing with cyber threats that one might face in day-to-day life”, he added.
Elaborating on the cyber threats, Andrey Doukhvalov, Head of Future Technologies, Chief Strategy Architect, Kaspersky cautioned that Asia-Pacific region was “not on the safe side of the cyber threat” and need to take adequate steps to guard against vulnerabilities.
These cyber attacks could be for different reasons besides seeking ransom, he said, adding the countries are also exposed to cyber attacks from terrorist organisations.
“It is in the interest for all to protect new technologies, especially industrial processes from growing threats of cyber attacks and make the world cyber safe,” he added.
As regards India, he said, Kaspersky was working with several large industrial houses and would look forward to increasing its presence as more and more companies would adopt newer technologies to optimize industrial processes.
According to a recent survey on state of industrial cyber security conducted by ARC Advisory Group and Kaspersky, “the nature of cyber attacks are changing from undirected attacks to targeted attacks that expose companies to ‘loss of control’ or ‘manipulation of control’.”
The survey notes that ransomware attacks were cited as the greatest concern followed by malware or viruses and advanced persistent threats (ATPs).
One of the world’s largest privately owned cyber security companies, Russia-based Kaspersky operates in over 200 countries and territories with 35 offices in 31 countries.