Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) and remote telemetry systems are evolving and changing to meet the growing need for critical data to be collected, measured and optimised in real time. For utilities, the systems that collect, transport and monitor this ever-increasing amount of data, are vital for maintaining critical services, increasing efficiencies and reducing costs. Ensuring the availability of telemetry and SCADA systems to enable a network of remote assets to communicate is therefore an increasingly important consideration in the industrial marketplace.
Rod Linton, General Manager at Servelec Technologies Australia, said, “Telemetry and SCADA systems are the first line of defence against critical asset and infrastructure failure.
“Failure costs money and disruptions in data flow can cripple critical infrastructure, potentially impacting the health, security and well-being of the people who depend on utilities. In today’s age of data reliance and IIoT, it is imperative that the devices monitoring and controlling critical assets are resilient and secure.”
Rod Linton speaks from a position of experience as General Manager of the Australia division of Servelec Technologies, a market-leading global provider of end-to-end remote telemetry hardware and software products, and manufacturers of the Kingfisher remote telemetry product range.
“Our customers operate in every critical industry you can imagine, including water, electrical and gas transmission and distribution networks, rail, airports, mining, agriculture, environmental and broadcasting,” Rod said.
“With such high profile customers, we fully understand the responsibility for ensuring that the remote telemetry devices that measure and control critical assets are properly equipped for modern challenges.”
Unfortunately, infrastructure control systems are increasingly becoming targets for cyber attackers and some of the systems that control these processes remain vulnerable to unwanted manipulation. Designing and implementing a resilient industrial network security architecture requires core competencies in both cyber security and industrial automation.
Cyber security has long been a focus for Servelec Technologies and a key feature for the Kingfisher remote telemetry product range. Quite simply to stay ahead of the threat, industrial hardware must continually develop; the recently released Kingfisher CP-35 processor module is a strong example of security principles applied in practice.
The new CP-35 processor module includes digital signing of firmware to eliminate the ability of hackers to tamper with files, along with Role Based Access features that ensure users can only manipulate systems within their bounds of authority.
The Kingfisher CP-35 has also been tested against the Achilles Test Platform which is used to evaluate product robustness to cyber attacks. Achilles testing helps developers discover vulnerabilities and allow faults to be reproduced, isolated and identified before products are introduced to the market.
Apart from the ever-present threat of cyber attack, Servelec Technologies considers product resilience to be a key business objective.
“Any disruption in the operation of telemetry devices can rapidly cripple a network,” Rod said.
“The Kingfisher remote telemetry platform protects processes and data, and maximises system availability courtesy of its modular design, and redundancy options that tolerate processor, power and communications failures. The Kingfisher CP-35 processor also uses ECC (Error Correcting Code) memory to eliminate the possibility of data loss.
“Memory errors can cause security vulnerabilities, crashes, as well as corrupted or lost data. With the use of ECC memory the Kingfisher CP-35 is taking telemetry product resilience to a new level.”
The release of the Kingfisher CP35 processor module also sees the addition of a graphical OLED display that provides a localised screen for monitoring and interrogating system parameters, I/O status and communication ports.
This OLED display, combined with an integrated web server, allows early diagnosis and faster resolution of faults thus significantly reducing running and maintenance costs. The OLED and webserver make Kingfisher products easier to use, while still ensuring enough power to run and store the most challenging SCADA and telemetry applications.
Servelec Technologies is developing the Kingfisher platform to leverage modern technology, and prepare its customers for the industrial automation challenges of tomorrow.
Matt Hawkridge, Development and Support Director at Servelec Technologies, said, “We are continually investing in R&D at Servelec Technologies and we are delighted that the most recent product borne of this effort. The new CP-35 processor accentuates the security, resilience and modular philosophies which have defined the Kingfisher brand for over 30 years and will continue to do so.”
This partner content is brought to you by Servelec Technologies. For more information about the Kingfisher telemetry platform, please visit www.servelectechnologies.com.