Islamabad (Muhammad Yasir) Techaccess Pakistan today hosted a session on “Cybersecurity Challenge in Critical Infrastructure (Power Sector)” in Islamabad aim of soliciting awareness amongst national public and private sector’s energy power entities against the global risks of cyber-attacks.
The session was organized by Techaccess Pakistan and a large number of power sector’s professionals, trade and business representatives, NEPRA’s members of the authority and professionals attended the event.
Chairman NEPRA, Tauseef H. Farooqi in his welcoming address highlighted the importance of the session. He remarked that cyberspace is the new 21st century warzone. Most of the cyber-attack in 2021 and 2022 were focused on energy sector. Cybersecurity is more challenging within power sector due to dispersed geo locations of generation plants and interdependence between OT and IT infrastructure. Cybersecurity incidents are now “Eco-System” challenges because it is not just one electricity supply chain actor that is targeted but the weakest link in somewhere in country’s power system. We need comprehensive cybersecurity governance model to deal with this Ecosystem challenge and promote security and resilience-by design culture.
CTO Tariq Malik emphasized that the recent cyber-attacks by means of “viruses” or other known methods against primary energy operators and in general OT (SCADA) Systems, are once again reminding us that we are now facing a very expensive “digital pandemic” which has become an “endemic” in threat handling.
In fact, many events of cyber incidents are continuously emerging at global level on several OT Systems on different industrial technological plants with a fluctuation of increases and temporary apparent decreases in the number of cases identified (not always able to detect or report).
Unlikely, Industries have to learn to live with it, putting in place and continuously updating the necessary treatments to thwart and “mitigate their effects” according to “protocols” suggested by Cyber Security Authorities and Industrial entities, specialists in the Cyber Domain, daily involved to categories insurgences’ cyber incidents and their effects. In the session the trainer also talked about the cyclical practice of identifying, classifying, prioritizing, remediating and mitigating software vulnerabilities that provides the idea of vulnerability management.
Among the indications that emerge from various parts as a common factor, it will undoubtedly be decisive that of investing with determination in the creation of a progressive national autonomy in the development of advanced products and technologies to be promptly integrated into the public cyber security ecosystem or private cyber security ecosystem.
Mehmood Jabbar CEO of Techaccess Pakistan jointly with its industrial partner RTA has exactly approached this mission to have a national under controlled cyber security solution which is able to manage in a secure way its H24 support national Corporates and Governmental Authorities by the adaptation of RTA and iSOC to the operational requirements and IT / OT infrastructures for its most sensitive Customers. Saad Mudassir Chief Company Engineer from Associated Press of Pakistan said that, “The event was so informative and well managed. The practical training is something above, considering generic workshops”.