Many manufacturers fail to update legacy systems and software over the years. This can increase the risk of cyberattacks, create operational inefficiencies that chip away at results, and complicate digital transformation efforts.
That’s the situation a global food and beverage manufacturer found itself in as it began planning a multi-year modernization project. Three main challenges needed to be addressed. One key goal: to streamline the management of its critical OT systems and integrate new assets that had not been consistently implemented with the aging technologies still in use. Without this integration, the company’s workforce lacked the skills to consistently manage the OT systems.
Compounding matters, the COVID-19 pandemic stoked demand for food products. The company’s business leaders worried that their technology infrastructure could not withstand the increasing traffic, potentially resulting in downtime and loss of revenue.
The company also needed help implementing secure remote access to help protect against rising cybersecurity incidents as more employees and third parties worked from home. Combined, these factors created an unstable and unreliable technology ecosystem that caused unplanned financial losses. The manufacturer needed help with implementing consistent, reliable management of its OT digital assets to help deliver reliable uptime amidst the challenges.
The company asked Rockwell Automation to deploy managed services to better help protect against cyberattacks, and create a stable and efficient operational environment. Managed Network and Cybersecurity Services help today’s manufacturers tackle the challenges of securing networks, equipment, and data that have been previously isolated from IT networks and risk. Outdated equipment and skills gaps are roadblocks for IT/OT convergence and digital transformation. Rockwell Automation Managed Services operated as an extension of the company, taking the guesswork out of cybersecurity and enabling them to focus on other priorities and areas of expertise.
Rockwell Automation worked with the company to design an enterprise OT-Managed Support Services program that supported all digital infrastructure equipment. Additional solutions were implemented to enable consistent deployment and support for critical applications, software, and infrastructure, and 24x7 remote monitoring.
Rockwell Automation also helped the company deploy 19 OT Industrial Data Centers (IDCs) with a continuous threat detection platform to address cybersecurity risks. And to help protect home-bound workers, secure remote access was deployed at 40 North American sites.
The modernized infrastructure and supporting managed services allow this manufacturer to reduce cybersecurity threats to its corporate and OT networks through 24/7 threat monitoring, while minimizing downtime risks. Consistent deployment and integration of technology assets have helped boost system reliability and improve application management and plant uptime. Deployment of secure remote access capabilities helps protect employees, third-party partners and the company’s operational infrastructure from cyber risks. Combined, these initiatives have allowed the company to increase operational efficiencies while reducing costs.