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January 30, 2013

Cyber-security in oil & gas will be huge: report

More protection needed

By CBR Staff Writer

Cyber-security spending on the oil & gas infrastructure is expected to reach $1.87bn over the next five years, with increased cyber-attacks against these utilities, according to a new report.

ABI Research’s new report revealed that the utilities will invest in IT networks, industrial control systems and data security in addition to counter measures, policies and procedures.

ABI Research senior cybersecurity analyst Michela Menting said that the lack of appropriate security has already allowed a number of destructive cyber-attacks to lay waste to some of the most high-profile companies in the industry.

"From Night Dragon to Shamoon, oil and gas companies have been the victims of sophisticated cyber threats since 2009," Menting said.

"Many of these attacks have caused significant financial damages – and yet the industry is painstakingly slow in deploying proper cybersecurity measures adapted to the infrastructure."

According to the research firm, the negligent approach is not only careless, it could also turn dangerous as illicit interception and adaptation of commands to pipelines may lead to massive environmental disasters or even life-threatening situations.

The report also suggests that the oil and gas infrastructure has to be made one of the most secure, both physically and digitally.

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