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5 Best Practices for Manufacturing Cybersecurity

A Department of Defense (DoD) push to protect data by vetting suppliers more thoroughly illuminates how any CNC machining business can improve. 

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Is your customers’ data secure? Most leaders of CNC machining businesses likely would say “yes,” but answering in the affirmative is no longer enough for those seeking sensitive defense-industry work. The struggle to meet new government standards shows the extent to which basic cybersecurity best practices can differentiate not only these manufacturers, but virtually any shop trusted with sensitive data. 

Our expansive July 2019 issue cover story, “How to Become a Defense Supplier,” touched on more than cybersecurity.

This was the subject of a recent conversation with David Watts, solution consultant at Avatara, an information technology firm that is focusing on helping small- and mid-sized manufacturers meet new Department of Defense (DoD) requirements. More specifically, Avatara is helping DoD suppliers prepare for Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC). While current regulations dictate that DoD suppliers constantly track and update their own security policies and report on progress, the new CMMC requires answering to third-party auditors, and doing so prior to the awarding of a contract rather than after the fact. “A lot of manufacturers are going to be caught flat-footed,” Mr. Watts says.

National security implications aside, Mr. Watts says a crisis for some can present opportunity for others. Based on Avatara’s experience with customers so far, the most significant areas of weakness involve practices and procedures that are rudimentary by modern cybersecurity standards, even if they take time and effort to implement. As he puts it, “If you don’t do this stuff, you’re nowhere near ready for CMMC. But really, a lot of it could be viewed as basic best practices for anyone.” Examples include:  

Training Regularly

Although the specifics had not been published at the time of this writing, the CMMS builds directly on the current National Institute for Technology (NIST) 800-171 standard, which already specifies training for key employees. “You’ll have to show the auditors, ‘Here are the training sessions, here are which ones we passed and failed, and here’s what we’re doing about it if we failed,’” Watts says.

Even without auditing, staying up to date is essential because threats are ever-evolving, he says. For example, security technology might not be enough for shops that do not appreciate the power of social engineering tactics. Phishing, or the sending of fake emails to obtain passwords or other information, is a classic example. “Just having a firewall in place is not enough to prevent that,” he says, adding that formal training should include practicing fake attacks. “It’ll tell you ‘Bob clicked this link seven times,’ and then you can tailor your training to Bob.’”

Requiring Strong Passwords

Password policies — that is, the rules governing what makes a good password — could explain part of the reason for the prevalence of tactics like phishing. Mr. Watts says that following best practices for passwords is a requirement for CMMC Level 3, the minimum level of certification for most CNC machining businesses seeking DoD contracts. Examples include requirements for certain numbers of characters and symbols; requirements that passwords change regularly; limits on using identical passwords; and limits on log-in attempts.

Requiring Multi-Factor Authentication

Multi-factor authentication refers to the use of multiple means — that is, more than just a password — to verify that users are who they say they are. For instance, a bank might ask for both a log-in ID and the answers to personal security questions. This is good practice in general, but necessary for CMMC, Mr. Watts says.

Monitoring for Threats

As is the case with current NIST standards, CMMC requires monitoring incoming and outgoing data to detect attacks and potential indicators of attacks, Mr. Watts says. Examples include malicious code, communications with external systems, unusual traffic patterns and so forth. Likewise, records of data crossing a network are necessary to identify attackers, weak points and more in the event of a security breach.   

Considering Security Beyond the Virtual

One of the simplest ways to steal sensitive data is to simply plug a USB stick into a computer or server. For its part, Avatara maintains all customers’ data in a private data center environment. Servers lack a port for any removable media, and are locked behind biometric access points and defended by armed guards. Manufacturers that opt to maintain their own information technology infrastructure may not go to these lengths, but precautions might be warranted even if the risk is more to a shop’s own financials rather than national security.  

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Source: https://www.mmsonline.com/blog/post/5-best-practices-for-manufacturing-cybersecurity

Manufacturing

Connections with Design for Manufacturing professionals or companies?

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Hello my Reddit friends. You all have been extremely helpful in the past when I’ve posted here, so I’m hopeful for your help once again 🙂

I have a product that’s officially patented and ready for manufacturing. It’s a self-defense device for women that’s designed to be worn as a cuff bracelet. We have 2 designs with Solidworks files already in hand. One design still needs DFM tweaks to make it more simplified for manufacturing.

We’d like to partner with a company who can take us to the manufacturing stage. I understand from insight in this sub that it’s in our best interest to align our manufacturing partner with a company already in the same industry (i.e self-defense, weaponry).

Do any of you have recommendations on a manufacturer already within this space…or perhaps a full-service prototype/design/manufacturing partner? Some of you have shared you work for companies like this – so if you could DM me with more info that would be epic!

Thanks in advance 🙂

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Trade with the Official CFD Partners of AC Milan
Source: https://old.reddit.com/r/manufacturing/comments/lxa303/connections_with_design_for_manufacturing/

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Manufacturing

Connections with Design for Manufacturing professionals or companies?

Republished by Plato

Published

on

Hello my Reddit friends. You all have been extremely helpful in the past when I’ve posted here, so I’m hopeful for your help once again 🙂

I have a product that’s officially patented and ready for manufacturing. It’s a self-defense device for women that’s designed to be worn as a cuff bracelet. We have 2 designs with Solidworks files already in hand. One design still needs DFM tweaks to make it more simplified for manufacturing.

We’d like to partner with a company who can take us to the manufacturing stage. I understand from insight in this sub that it’s in our best interest to align our manufacturing partner with a company already in the same industry (i.e self-defense, weaponry).

Do any of you have recommendations on a manufacturer already within this space…or perhaps a full-service prototype/design/manufacturing partner? Some of you have shared you work for companies like this – so if you could DM me with more info that would be epic!

Thanks in advance 🙂

submitted by /u/muchclever
[link] [comments]Checkout PrimeXBT
Trade with the Official CFD Partners of AC Milan
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Manufacturing

America’s Civil Engineers Give U.S. Infrastructure a C- Grade

While it’s an improvement from the last report card, nobody should be celebrating.

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There is a water main break in the United States every two minutes, according to the American Society of Civil Engineers. That means 6 billion gallons of treated water are lost in the U.S. every day. Getty Images

Not great.

The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) on Wednesday unveiled the latest edition of its Report Card for America’s Infrastructure, giving the United States a C- grade.  

While it’s a better grade than the last edition in 2017, when American infrastructure nabbed a D+, nobody should be celebrating this very slight improvement.

For one, the grade examines America’s entire infrastructure, from roads and bridges to public transit and aviation to schools and public parks to hazardous waste and wastewater systems to broadband and the electric grid. That means some infrastructure fared better than others; there’s a bit of grading on a curve happening here.

Freight and passenger rail earned a solid B grade, for example, while public transit got a D- grade. Ports earned a B-, but Inland Waterways got a D+ and Dams a solid D. Other areas that earned a D+ or less include Schools, Roads, Aviation, Hazardous Waste, Levees, Public Parks, Stormwater and Wastewater.

Bridges earned a solid C grade – but that’s actually a decrease from the last report. More than 46,000 bridges across the country are now considered structurally deficit, and the maintenance backlog for bridges is now $125 billion, according to the ASCE.

None of this will come as a surprise to anyone who follows the infrastructure debate regularly, of course. We’ve had so many infrastructure weeks over the years that it’s become a joke.

Which begs the question: How did it get this bad, and why can’t we get our act together to fix it?

This brings me to The Sopranos. (Stick with me.)

Like a lot of people, one of the things I’ve done over the past year is rewatch The Sopranos. Something I’ve noticed is how the expectations for A.J. Soprano, the troubled son of series protagonist Tony Soprano, shift downward as the series progresses.

At the start, Tony and his wife Carmela hope that A.J. can avoid the family business and follow his older sister to a prestigious four-year school. But A.J. isn’t the most serious student and ends up posting poor grades, so the focus becomes state schools. After A.J. gets into trouble and is expelled, it is community college. He eventually gets fired from Blockbuster.

Maybe it’s because ASCE uses a report card to grade infrastructure or the fact that I’ve just been stuck in my house watching old Sopranos episodes for too long, but A.J. Soprano’s slow-and-steady downward progression is sort of what has happened to American infrastructure.

The United States once led the world in infrastructure. Expectations were high. Americans took for granted that their roads and bridges, ports and airports, schools and parks, public transit and railways and electric grid and everything else would lead the world.

But over the course of several decades, we let our infrastructure fall into disrepair. It didn’t happen all at once. And most of the time we get by, even though it means life is harder than it needs to be.

The roads were just a little more crowded at first; now drivers spend $1,000 extra every year due to wasted fuel and time because of the poor conditions of our roads, according to the ASCE.

Our airports slowly went from being symbols of American strength to among the worst; airline passengers faced 96 million minutes of delays in 2019, the ASCE reports.

Water system disruptions were once rare events; now there’s a water main break in the U.S. every two minutes, leading to 6 billion gallons of treated water lost each day (enough to fill 9,000+ swimming pools), the ASCE says.

Now everyone has diminished expectations for how our infrastructure should be. Sure, we’d love it to lead the world again – but hey, not all of us have the makings of a varsity athlete.

Poor infrastructure means more hours stuck in traffic, more time waiting for delayed planes and trains. It costs us money. It means the country is less competitive on the world stage. Yet it hasn’t been enough to spark any serious change.

But now things are getting to the breaking point.

It’s still unclear how many people died in Texas and other states because of the recent power outages that left more than 4.5 million people without electricity for days in the midst of a brutal winter storm. But the number is already too high, and it includes an 11-year-old boy. Meanwhile, folks in Jackson, Mississippi still do not have access to clean water weeks after winter weather caused damage there; the city faces a $2 billion infrastructure funding shortfall.

As I wrote a few weeks ago, I was one of the lucky Texas residents who didn’t lose power during last month’s catastrophic infrastructure failure. But lots of people I know did. Many of them made it through the power outages O.K., but then had water pipes burst because their homes or apartment buildings no longer had heat. Some are only now having their water restored.

There’s clearly a recognition that we need to invest in infrastructure. What has been lacking over the decades is the political willpower to actually do it.

The good news is that not only will we build a safer, stronger country when we finally get to work – but we will also create millions of good jobs in the process, many in manufacturing. If we include Buy America, we will ensure that money is reinvested right back into American workers, companies and communities.

A C- grade isn’t good enough. And we don’t have to be A.J. Soprano. Join me in telling President Biden and your Members of Congress to finally invest in infrastructure.

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Source: https://www.americanmanufacturing.org/blog/americas-civil-engineers-give-u-s-infrastructure-a-c-grade/

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