Safety and security do go hand-in-hand and that point keeps resonating with new product releases in the manufacturing automation sector.
“I don’t have to convince you we do safety and security,” said Alexander Horch, vice president R&D an product management at safety system provider HIMA. “Smart safety is reliability. We do things reliably and it is very important what we do for our customers is profitable. No one want to pay just for safety, they also want profitability.”
HIMA talked at the ARC Industry Forum 2019 about its Smart Safety Platform (SSP), which is a functional safety platform that gives plant operators cybersecurity to ensure safety automation and critical assets are protected.
SSP consists of hardware, engineering software, firmware and safe communication. The object is they four areas are interwoven, “enabling plant operators to reduce the complexity of their safety systems and stay protected against the ever-increasing risks of accidental and nefarious access,” Horch said.
The platform supports legacy products and at the same time, in the course of digitization, covers safety and security.
Safety and security is even more important these days after the Triton attack hit a Triconex safety system at a Saudi Arabian refinery in 2018. While the attacker gained control of the DCS and the safety system, the safety system did its job and safely shut down the facility.
“That incident was a wake-up call for the industry,” Horch said. “Everybody was thinking it could happen one day. (The attackers) couldn’t do what they intended to do. I think we will see much more.”