Emerging ICS Trends Set to Reshape Cybersecurity Landscape at SANS Security East 2024

A Glimpse into Malware Threats, Cloud Integration, Supply Chain Security, and Regulatory Shifts in ICS

In an era where digital transformation is paramount, Industrial Control Systems (ICS) stand at the forefront of technological evolution and cybersecurity. As we approach SANS Security East 2024, powered by an innovative ICS curriculum, it's crucial to recognize the emerging trends in ICS and their impact on critical infrastructure and cybersecurity landscapes.

Trends in Industrial Control Systems (ICS)

Emerging Malware Threats: Recent developments have seen an increase in targeted malware frameworks. These sophisticated threats, often backed by state-sponsored actors, pose a significant risk to specific geographies and sectors. This evolving landscape underscores the need for robust cybersecurity measures in ICS.

Cloud Integration in ICS: The migration towards cloud-based solutions has reached the ICS domain. Sectors are increasingly adopting cloud technology for non-real-time planning and analysis, with some exploring cloud-based monitoring and control. This shift presents new challenges and opportunities for security in ICS environments.

Supply Chain Risks: The pandemic exposed the fragility of global supply chains. Today, the focus extends to comprehending broader risks, including remote access vulnerabilities, hardware and software integrity, and ongoing third-party risks throughout the system lifecycle.

OT-Specific Incident Response: The importance of specialized incident response capabilities in operational technology (OT) environments has never been more evident. Developing OT-specific response plans is essential to mitigate the impacts of successful cyberattacks in critical infrastructure sectors.

Regulatory Developments: A significant trend in 2024 will be the advancement of OT and ICS cybersecurity regulations worldwide. Notable initiatives include the ongoing NERC CIP efforts, focusing on virtualization, cloud security, and internal network monitoring, and the EU's NIS2 directive.

The SANS Security East 2024 event, scheduled for February 19-24 in New Orleans and virtually, is set to be a landmark for cybersecurity professionals, offering a unique opportunity to gain hands-on cybersecurity training from top industry experts. The event is particularly noteworthy for being 'Powered by ICS' curriculum, emphasizing the critical role of ICS in current and future cybersecurity landscapes.

The distinction between IT and OT in cybersecurity is vital these days," emphasized Tim Conway, Technical Director of ICS and SCADA programs at SANS Institute."Critical Infrastructure organizations and ICS security practitioners must recognize their unique position to require hybrid skill sets that blend operations, engineering, technology, security, and safety. The key is in developing capabilities that respect the operational context and technological nuances of ICS."

This event not only offers a platform for professionals to enhance their skills and knowledge but also serves as a crucial junction where the latest ICS trends will be thoroughly examined and discussed.

"The insights and expertise shared at this event will be instrumental in shaping the strategies and approaches necessary to navigate this evolving cybersecurity landscape," said Conway. "As we delve into these critical topics, the distinction between Information Technology (IT) and Operational Technology (OT) becomes more pronounced, highlighting the need for a tailored approach to securing our most vital systems."

SANS Security East 2024 offers in-person and online courses, hands-on NetWars Tournaments, real-world cybersecurity training, interactive labs, course materials, and GIAC certifications. Don't miss this opportunity to enhance your skills and network with industry experts. Register Now.

About SANS Institute

The SANS Institute was established in 1989 as a cooperative research and education organization. Today, SANS is the most trusted and, by far, the largest provider of cybersecurity training and certification to professionals in government and commercial institutions worldwide. Renowned SANS instructors teach more than 60 courses at in-person and virtual cybersecurity events and OnDemand. GIAC, an affiliate of the SANS Institute, validates practitioner skills through more than 35 hands-on technical certifications in cybersecurity. The SANS Technology Institute, a regionally accredited independent subsidiary, offers master's and bachelor's degrees, graduate certificates, and an undergraduate certificate in cybersecurity. SANS also delivers a wide variety of free resources to the InfoSec community, including consensus projects, research reports, webcasts, podcasts, and newsletters; it also operates the Internet's early warning system--the Internet Storm Center. At the heart of SANS are the many security practitioners, representing varied global organizations from corporations to universities, working together to support and educate the global information security community.