Zscaler is proud to announce a new strategic partnership with Siemens, the global powerhouse in industrial automation and digitalization, to address emerging cyber threats posed to industrial infrastructure and remote collaboration challenges for discrete and process industries. Together, Zscaler and Siemens strengthen cybersecurity for industrial environments by combining Zscaler’s cloud-delivered zero trust network access service with Siemens’s powerful local processing platform.
The solution provides fast, seamless, and secure remote access to factory-floor systems and machines for employees and third parties, such as plant operators and maintenance technicians. With cloud-delivered security, you can dynamically expand existing systems by running the Zscaler Private Access App Connector as a Docker container on Siemens’ SCALANCE LPE local processing engine to provide highly secure access to industrial automation environments via a zero trust connectivity method. Deployment of secure remote access has never been easier.
Our joint solution extends zero trust to OT and IoT environments and accelerates OT/IT convergence and security maturity for enterprises with critical manufacturing and production environments. This offering is now available to customers through joint Zscaler and Siemens go-to-market efforts.
Solving the OT remote access challenge
Today, plant operations and OT system owners are modernizing their industrial networks and expanding connectivity for their remote workforce to boost productivity. While interconnecting the factory floor to IT systems unlocks business value, it also creates vulnerabilities and increases the risks of cyber threats critically disrupting your operations – or worse putting workers in danger. In addition, unplanned downtime from cyber security incidents or network outages can cause serious harm to plants and personnel, resulting in revenue loss and reputational impact.
Traditionally, employees and third parties are connected to OT environments via virtual private networks (VPN). There are two challenges with this that need to be considered. First, the cumbersome user experience [hop through rendezvous server and jump host]. Second, the expanded attack surface. In the traditional approach, employees and third parties are connected to OT environments via management systems for virtual private networks (VPNs. However, due to the increasing amount of required remote connections for IT/OT collaboration or IIoT, these traditional solutions are being stretched to their limits.
The need for zero trust
OT environments were once islands, air-gapped from the internet. These air gaps are eroding and no longer enough. Since even VPN solutions widely used in the past will reach their limits, we need a new paradigm for industry cybersecurity. Enter zero trust. As today’s work-from-anywhere society reshapes companies and industries in lasting ways, it is important to modernize security concepts, especially as legacy technology that is unable to support secure remote access in the most secure manner. Our future calls for a zero-trust approach when modernizing OT networks in order to accelerate the move to more secure remote access implementations for OT.
Preventing operational disruption and downtime
Together, Zscaler and Siemens provide OT security teams with highly secure remote access to their industrial networks for employees and third-party users, maximizing productivity and uptime. With Zscaler Private Access, you can allow employees to continuously and remotely access restricted areas (e.g. manufacturing areas, restricted labs). The connection is limited to the concerned machine network and restricted area, and complies with cybersecurity rules and frameworks. In this way, critical manufacturing and production industries can now empower existing automation networks with Zero Trust principles. Choosing fully cloud-delivered OT zero trust network access solutions provides seamless, easy access from anywhere in the world, while eliminating the attack surface and significantly reducing the risk of a cyberattack.
Joint benefits of Zscaler and Siemens SCALANCE device:
- Connectivity – Control who and what connects to your OT and IoT edge networks for secure, flexible, granular access to distributed operational infrastructure
- Fast, Reliable – Users get the shortest, frictionless path to the OT network. Zscaler cloud designed for high availability and low latency
- Simplicity – One software for secure remote access to OT and IT business, production and cloud resources.
- Reduces cost and complexity – Eliminates the need for VPN infrastructure. Reduced connectivity demands and firewall rules by means of specified internet breakouts.
- Out of the box – SCALANCE products support Zscaler technology out of the box
- Legacy integration – authorized and authenticated communication also with legacy devices by means of zero trust gateways
I am particularly excited about this new innovation in cybersecurity because it is a major step forward in OT/IT convergence, which the industry has been long anticipating. A convergence in controls of the OT and IT networks not only simplifies enterprise IT spend, but it also helps modernize OT security principles, which becomes more critical every day given the ransomware and other mounting threats against manufacturing and production environments. Now, with Zscaler, an enterprise can leverage integrated security concepts between OT and IT domains, leveraging zero trust for all users in all networks to securely and remotely access the data they need to do their jobs, no matter where they are, or what network connection they use. This comprehensive architectural diagram below cleanly depicts the now encompassing solution that enables remote workers, branch office workers, corporate headquarter workers, and third party partners to access applications, systems and devices where they may need to access data to perform employment functions, conduct servicing and maintenance, or other duties:
Protect and empower your anywhere workforce. Start with zero today.
Introducing Zscaler and Siemens’ joint industrial secure remote access solutions is very exciting for us. We’re working with OT and IT security professionals to help strengthen their arsenal of cyber defenses and accelerate their OT and IT transformation. Take advantage of our experts and tools designed to help you succeed in your zero trust journey.
Read the Zscaler and Siemens partner brief
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Webpage: What is OT Security?
Webpage: Zscaler Secure Remote Access for OT Systems
Press Release: Siemens and Zscaler Partner on Integrated Zero Trust Security Solutions for OT/IT
Siemens AG (Berlin and Munich) is a technology company focused on industry, infrastructure, transport, and healthcare. From more resource-efficient factories, resilient supply chains, and smarter buildings and grids, to cleaner and more comfortable transportation as well as advanced healthcare, the company creates technology with purpose adding real value for customers. By combining the real and the digital worlds, Siemens empowers its customers to transform their industries and markets, to transform the everyday for billions of people. Siemens also owns a majority stake in the publicly listed company Siemens Healthineers, a globally leading medical technology provider shaping the future of healthcare. In addition, Siemens holds a minority stake in Siemens Energy, a global leader in the transmission and generation of electrical power.
In fiscal 2020, which ended on September 30, 2020, the Siemens Group generated revenue of €55.3 billion and net income of €4.2 billion. As of September 30, 2020, the company had around 293,000 employees worldwide. Further information is available on the Internet at www.siemens.com.