IPP&T Magazine Online

One company leads the pack in security updates for 2017

December 22, 2017   Don Horne

With the rise in cyber threats, one company’s security update service is proving the most popular choice for companies looking to enhance their protection of intellectual property.

ABB’s Security Update Service for industrial control systems (ICS) is the most in-demand offering during 2017, according to a recent ABB press release, as companies with several systems in one or more sites strive to centralize all security updates.

ICSs can be exposed to the same spam, virus and security threats that corporate IT networks are facing. However, the impact of malicious software on an ICS may be more serious and more damaging than that faced by general purpose computer systems and networks. ABB recommends “a defense in depth approach with multiple layers of protection to shield systems and data from threats.”

The first line of defense is to keep the control system software and operating system software updated and protected. Published security updates and anti-virus patches are vigorously tested on all ABB operating systems to ensure critical functions remain available on customer systems. “An active Automation Sentinel agreement is the exclusive way for ABB control system users to receive these validated Microsoft security patches and anti-virus definition files and verification reports,” states the ABB release.


ABB offers two options for customers to receive these files:

  • Registered users can log on to myABB/My Control System account and download the files manually.
  • The ABB Security Update Service provides these validated updates and patches from a qualified ABB upstream server through a highly secure automated process to each customer site that subscribes. Frequent and automatic synchronization of servers is via a secure connection instead of internet connection to third party servers.

The operating system updates and anti-virus software patches that are reviewed, tested, validated and/ or verified by ABB for relevance and system compatibility with its control system software are:

  • Microsoft security updates and Microsoft service packs
  • McAfee updates, scan engines and virus definition files
  • Symantec scan engines and virus definition files


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