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US defences hacking attacks on the rise

January 10th, 2007

A recent report outlining the threat to US defence security reveals that hacking attempts have gone up by 43 per cent. The desire, of hackers, to obtain and thereby steal or corrupt technology design data could have terrifying results should this information fall into the ‘wrong hands’.

But the threat of attack is no different to that suffered by designers and manufacturers around the world who are the persistently targets of industrial espionage. Not surprisingly, the majority of attacks have been identified in the report as originating from East Asia and the Pacific region. It may be no coincidence that this region is also undergoing an expansion in manufacturing and the development of industry in general.

In fact, it was only in December that the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) of the People’s Republic of China adopted Ethernet/IP as a machinery industry standard. This points to the evolution of a joined up international manufacturing industry, with companies located in the West relying upon the transmission of vital data along Ethernet networks to production facilities further afield. The benefits in efficiency are undeniable – but it would do well for companies to remain alert to the potential threats too, and this report is a timely reminder of the ongoing need to protect critical data needed to run industrial networks.

By Joachim Fietz, CEO, Innominate

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