The rise of interconnected OT and IT systems is often attributed to how business models have evolved with the purpose of enhancing operational efficiency. For example, SCADA networks deployed along oil pipelines now collect oil output data that is essential to billing and pricing systems.
This increase in data collection allows companies to predict with higher levels of accuracy not only levels of oil production and output, but also expected revenue. However, it should be noted that these interconnected systems do not only bring benefits. A downside of these systems is that the likelihood of introducing cybersecurity threats to OT systems increases significantly. It is for this reason that newspaper headlines and articles often describe how the compromising of IT systems can have a hugely negative impact on OT systems. What is compounding this complex issue even further is that ransomware attacks are increasing in their severity. This type of malware exploits Windows vulnerabilities and attacks insufficiently protected systems.