Firm stays on mission to bolster reliability, resilience, safety in industrial control environments
ICS threat detection and response specialist Dragos this week said it would acquire NexDefense, an Atlanta-based developer of industrial control visibility tools. As part of the deal, the firm also introduced Dragos Community Tools, a pair of free assessment wares to help organizations gain a better handle on the security posture of their industrial control environments.
The Lowdown: Terms of the deal were not announced. NexDefense is well known in ICS circles in part for leading the current development of Integrity, a tool originally known as Sophia funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and developed by the Idaho National Laboratory. The acquisition and related tools launch continues Dragos’ mission of making ICS security tools and knowledge more readily accessible to the ICS security community, officials said.
The Details: Dragos Community Tools provide organizations with free asset identification functionality, an important first step toward effective threat detection and response, officials said. The capability is especially important in ICS environments, which often contain thousands of scarcely inventoried assets with interconnected communications.
The free tools announced this week include:
• The former NexDefense Integrity for industrial organizations in need of continuous, passive ICS network monitoring with basic DPI and asset fingerprinting capabilities
• Dragos’ CyberLens for organizations needing an assessment tool able to quickly process packet captures and visualize ICS environments
Background: Security of industrial control systems (ICS), the integrated hardware and software that monitors and controls machinery and other devices in industrial environments, is a growing concern. Last year, security vendor Kaspersky Lab reported that some 41 percent of the ICS platforms it monitors came under attack in the first half of 2018 alone. More than 27 percent of that malicious activity came via the Internet, the researchers said.
The Buzz: “Dragos is committed to safeguarding civilization, and central to this mission is finding ways to provide tools and resources for the entire community,” said Robert M. Lee, CEO and founder of Dragos. “With the acquisition of NexDefense, we can provide a free asset identification tool specifically for operators looking to start with situational awareness and enable continuous asset monitoring capabilities, thereby helping move our entire community closer to the next level of maturity in security against cyber threats.”