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An employee works on a Volkswagen e-Golf automobile in Dresden in 2018. Photo: Jens Schlueter/Getty Image

35% of global industrial plants have no response plan in case of cyberattacks, according to a survey conducted by Siemens and the Ponemon Institute.

Why it matters: The consensus among cybersecurity experts is to treat breaches as inevitable and plan ahead for resiliency. That can be particularly important in industrial systems, where physical safety and plant operations can hinge on the uptime of single systems.

The report sampled 1,726 employees of industrial companies scattered around the globe.

By the numbers: Only 42% of respondents rated their readiness for cyber attacks as "high."

  • While that number might be off since people aren't always the best judges of their own work, Siemens head of industrial cybersecurity Leo Simonovich told Axios that a low number actually speaks well of a community waking up to its vulnerability.
  • "We’ve seen a real awareness of the problem," he said. "The first step is identifying the threat."

From the survey, and confirmed by most experts' on-the-ground experience, Simonovich said there were three key problems that appear to plague industrial cybersecurity.

  • Experts aren't in charge. At the majority of plants, it's plant managers or industrial engineers, rather than cybersecurity experts, who run cybersecurity.
  • Low visibility. Unlike with traditional business networks, industrial networks often lack the tools to see what's going on in a network, which is critical in catching hackers. That, too, is getting better.
  • Staffing. This, said Simonovich, goes beyond the well-publicized global shortage of cybersecurity talent. Just as plant managers don't know the ins and outs of cybersecurity, cybersecurity talent often does not understand industrial machines that can frequently shut down when subjected to traditional cybersecurity processes.
  • "There's a lack of people who understand industrial controls, networking, security, and heavy machinery," he said. "One person needs at least 2-3 out of the four. "

Go deeper

Updated 50 mins ago - World

Up to 17 U.S. missionaries kidnapped in Haiti

Haitian soldiers guard the public prosecutor's office in Port-au-Prince earlier this month. Photo: Richard Pierrin/AFP via Getty Images

Children were among up to 17 American Christian missionaries and their relatives kidnapped by a gang in Haiti on Saturday, the New York Times first reported.

Details: The missionaries had just left an orphanage and were traveling by bus to the airport to "drop off some members" when the gang abducted them in Port-au-Prince, Haitian security officials said, per the NYT.

Venezuela suspends talks with opposition after Maduro ally extradited to U.S.

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro in Caracas, Venezuela, in June. Photo: Gaby Oraa/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A key ally of Venezuela's President Nicolás Maduro was extradited from Cape Verde to the U.S. Saturday to face money laundering charges in Florida, Bloomberg first reported.

Why it matters: Venezuela's government called off negotiations with opposition officials that were scheduled for Sunday in Mexico in response to the extradition of Alex Saab, a Colombian businessman and financial fixer for Maduro. Security forces placed six U.S. oil executives under house arrest later Saturday, per AP.

Kenosha shooting lawsuit accuses police of coordinating with militia

Police and protesters confront in front of the Kenosha County Courthouse on Aug. 25, 2020. Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The only survivor of a fatal shooting in Kenosha, Wisconsin, during protests last year has accused law enforcement in a lawsuit of conspiring with a "band of white nationalist vigilantes," the Washington Post reported Saturday.

Of note: Kyle Rittenhouse, 18, is due to stand trial on Nov. 1, accused of wounding Gaige Grosskreutz, who filed the suit, and killing two other people protesting the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Aug. 25, 2020. He's pleaded not guilty to charges including homicide and attempted homicide and maintains he fired in self-defense.