Securing access to IT/OT assets is an important topic, as many businesses utilize remote access in their normal day-to-day operations. This obviously includes personnel working from a remote location, but also refers to those inside the physical security perimeter who connect to IT assets or industrial control systems from outside the electronic security perimeter (ESP). The goal of security over Interactive Device Access for IT/OT assets is to ensure that the proper level of security is maintained for these connections.
A comprehensive and secure Interactive Access solution should defend against unauthorized access inside an organization’s ESP while enabling operations to be performed in an expedient and efficient manner by remote users with the proper authorization.
From a security perspective, personnel both inside and outside the ESP should be utilizing the same controls for access, ensuring a consistent view, method, and a process for the control of assets. This includes role-based access control, logging, and real-time event/incident detection. Addressing the requirements for access in isolation can result in a fragmented security solution, which can significantly affect the ability of the organization to support availability.
Real Life Examples – ConsoleWorks Secure Interactive Access
Our marketing department regularly schedules interviews and surveys with different segments of our customer base. This is what really refreshed the real value of secure interactive access. First was a survey where secure access was listed as a top benefit by 80% of respondents. Ok, that reaffirmed what I already knew but then I reviewed several recent interviews that put a far more personal touch to what this capability really means to the day-to-day users of ConsoleWorks.
Console access is the place users often must go to solve real production problems. These are the interfaces that are still active even when severe issues occur. As I was reviewing one interview, the customer pointed out that even when on vacation he was able to “hitchhike” a wireless signal from wherever he may be and securely access one or more consoles to solve whatever problem required his attention. That followed with another customer commenting that she can resolve issues whenever they occur from her own home, eliminating the need (cost and time) of driving into the facility in order to access the device and fix whatever problem has occurred. That’s a great day for you and the company and is exactly why secure remote access is so valuable.
Then I read the next interview! When the subject of remote access came up, this architect jumped in with the story of how he resolved a major production issue with ConsoleWorks while sailing on his boat on the Chesapeake Bay! Long live secure remote access. It makes it easier for administrators, engineers, and other staff to quickly solve problems when they occur and results in reduced cost and increased uptime for the company. No wonder this capability of ConsoleWorks consistently stays at the top of the benefits list for so many of our customers.