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Overcoming the challenging task of prioritizing your actions to reduce Cybersecurity Risks in OT Management


By Jay Gignac, Head of Global Sales & Marketing, Framatome Cybersecurity, Cyberwatch & Foxguard

February 22, 2024



Maintaining an accurate asset inventory in cybersecurity, particularly within industrial and critical sectors is a fundamental baseline. Despite the challenges posed by diverse and evolving assets, consolidating data from various sources, and contextualizing it is crucial for effective risk management. By implementing robust asset management strategies, organizations can enhance their cybersecurity posture, ensuring operational continuity and safeguarding critical infrastructure.


Resource constraints and the need to prevent operational disruptions necessitate prioritizing corrective actions in cybersecurity. Not all vulnerabilities can be addressed simultaneously, making it essential to prioritize based on risk severity. By mitigating the most critical risk first, organizations can allocate resources effectively and minimize potential impacts.


The complexity of industrial systems - the range of vendors, the fact that they are often geographically spread, and the obsolescence of some equipment - sometimes lacking cybersecurity capabilities poses significant challenges to prioritization. Additionally, regulatory requirements further add compliance constraints to prioritization efforts.

A risk-based prioritization methodology is essential for effective cybersecurity management. When utilizing information gathered from asset inventories and vulnerability assessments, organizations can conduct risk assessments to identify critical systems and evaluate the likelihood of exploitation. This method correlates severity, exploitability, and criticality obtained through context.


Following this methodology, designing a remediation plan involves determining what actions to take, in what order, and considering operational constraints. This ensures that resources are allocated efficiently, focusing on mitigating the most significant risk first.

Therefore, adopting a risk-based prioritization approach is crucial for effectively mitigating cyber risks and ensuring the resilience of critical infrastructure. The next step is to implement a remediation plan, addressing vulnerabilities and threats based on their risk severity and operational impact.


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