NEW YORK--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Waterfall Security Solutions (Waterfall), which specializes in critical infrastructure and industrial control systems security, announced today the availability of its Waterfall for Bulk Electric System (BES) Control Center solution. The solution is based on the company’s Unidirectional Security Gateways, but protects two-way communications with BES Control Centers, such as power grid Balancing Authorities and Reliability Coordinators. The Waterfall technology was selected, following a thorough evaluation and testing process, by a large U.S.-based energy company to protect its Control Centers.
“Balancing Authorities and other Control Centers are in a bind”
The Department of Homeland Security and other agencies have identified BES Control Centers as strategic targets for cyber-sabotage attacks. These centers are critical to the operation of the power grid, but they are fundamentally exposed to cyber-threats. This is because Balancing Authorities, Reliability Coordinators and other BES Control Centers must both acquire status information over wide-area networks every few seconds from partner utilities, and they must send those utilities commands every few seconds as well. Firewalls and other conventional IT-security mechanisms are routinely used to protect these network connections, but it is well-known that a variety of adversaries routinely defeat such protections.
“Balancing Authorities and other Control Centers are in a bind,” said Andrew Ginter, Waterfall’s vice president of Industrial Security. “The paths through firewalls that allow data to move also allow systems to be attacked. A rigorous attack-tree analysis shows that our solution is much stronger than firewalls. The authorities deploying our solutions are more secure because they have found this alternative to firewalls.”
The Waterfall solution uses hardware-enforced Unidirectional Gateways replicating inter-control-center protocol (ICCP) communications endpoints in two directions. The gateways are deployed as two completely independent communications channels. Since the gateways replicate ICCP endpoints instead of forwarding packets as firewalls do, the gateways do not suffer from the many, well-known vulnerabilities that accompany firewalls. In addition, the independent communications channels thoroughly frustrate the remote-control attacks which are the method of choice for advanced attackers.
About Waterfall Security Solutions
Waterfall Security Solutions Ltd. is the leading provider of Unidirectional Security Gateways™ for industrial control networks and critical infrastructures. Waterfall’s products are deployed in utilities and critical national infrastructures throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Israel. The technology reduces the cost and complexity of compliance with NERC-CIP, NRC, NIST, CFATS and other regulations, and includes support for leading industrial applications, including the OSIsoft PI™ Historian, the GE Proficy™ iHistorian, Siemens SIMATIC™/Spectrum™ solutions and GE OSM™ remote monitoring platforms, as well as OPC, Modbus, DNP3, ICCP and other industrial protocols. Waterfall received Frost & Sullivan’s 2012 Network Security Award for Industrial Control Systems Entrepreneurial Company of the Year. For more information: www.waterfall-security.com.