Sierra Nevada Corporation Unveils One-of-a-Kind Protection for Critical Utilities Operational Technology (OT) Systems

SPARKS, Nev., February 28, 2020 – The risk that cyberattacks pose to operational technology (OT) - the physical valves, pumps, machines, systems and networks used to generate, transmit and distribute power for electrical utilities, water treatment plants, oil and gas pipelines and other critical infrastructure – is increasing in frequency and potency as hackers’ ability to control OT grows. A successful attack on these OT systems can cut access to critical nationwide resources and inflict severe financial, environmental and structural damage.

Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) created Binary Armor® to prevent these attacks. SNC’s Binary Armor provides critical, real-time, endpoint cybersecurity. Its patented “functional whitelisting” technology stops both internal and external threats from reaching OT, including malware and intentionally unsafe or erroneous instructions that cause motors to spin too fast, valves to open or close at inappropriate times, or switches to turn out of sequence. By allowing only pre-approved, known, safe messages to reach OT, Binary Armor protects against insider threats, human error and enforces workflow to reduce the likelihood of equipment damage and personnel injury.

The Ukrainian attack, by itself, demonstrated the vulnerability of electrical grids. It is no surprise then that a 2019 survey of utilities conducted by Siemens and the Ponemon Institute found that, “[T]he majority of global utilities surveyed say, “cyber threats present a greater business risk to their OT than their IT environment. Utilities are concerned by the unique characteristics of OT environments, including a focus on availability, reliability and safety.”

The City of Fort Morgan, Colorado installed Binary Armor to protect it electric utilities in 2014. Doug Linton, Superintendent of the Fort Morgan Light & Power Department stated, “As a municipality, we are committed to protecting our operational technology systems from increasingly sophisticated and malicious hackers. As a mid-size utility, Binary Armor provided our City an affordable and simple solution for the complex problem of OT protection.”

Pete Fischer, Senior Director Programs at SNC stated, “SNC and the Binary Armor team is proud of our track record protecting utility SCADA and control systems in Fort Morgan and beyond since 2014. What is more, we are pleased that utility partners are confident in the U.S. Department of Defense and other certifications along with demonstrated results achieved by Binary Armor. We always say you don’t have to take our word about Binary Armor, but you can trust the demanding certifications Binary Armor has achieved.”

The Binary Armor engineering team has extensive experience developing solutions that enhance national security. Comprised entirely of individuals holding security clearances, the Binary Armor team can deliver solutions for protecting the most sensitive utility systems and sites. The Binary Armor team stands ready to protect our critical grid infrastructure and our quality of life.

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Binary Armor Capabilities:

Binary Armor SCADA Network Guard
Binary Armor SCADA network guard is an endpoint cybersecurity solution for SCADA and ICS networks. It has undergone rigorous testing and certification so end-users can be confident in the security it provides.

Binary Armor Avionics Guard
Department of Defense (DOD) weapon systems are increasingly complex and integrated, requiring avionics and critical systems to be accessible to mission systems and other networks. Binary Armor avionics guard not only bridges these communication interfaces, but extends SNC’s patented technology to provide bi-directional security between Ethernet, avionics buses such as Military Standard-1553, and serial communications.

Binary Armor Data Security
Binary Armor data security solution is a network communication technology that employs multiple network transport mechanisms to help conceal traffic from endpoints, route traffic, and construct a distributed mesh network of devices placed around the globe.

Binary Armor Virtual Guard
Binary Armor virtual guard is ideal for OEMs that desire best-of-breed cybersecurity capabilities hosted on their own control systems or network devices. Binary Armor virtual guard delivers the same trusted and proven technology that powers the SCADA network guard in a virtualized environment, enabling extreme flexibility and protection for a broad range of devices.

Binary Armor Secure Remote Monitoring
The Binary Armor secure remote monitoring solution consists of an integrated set of equipment, including sensor(s) such as thermal imaging cameras or weather monitoring equipment, a Binary Armor cybersecurity device, a wireless communications device (LTE, WiFi, LoRaWAN, etc.), and power management equipment inside a NEMA-rated polycarbonate or metal enclosure.

About Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC)
Owned by Chairwoman and President Eren Ozmen and CEO Fatih Ozmen, SNC is a trusted leader in solving the world’s toughest challenges through best-of-breed, open architecture engineering in Space Systems, Commercial Solutions, and National Security and Defense. SNC is recognized among the three most innovative U.S. companies in space, as a Tier One Superior Supplier for the U.S. Air Force, and as one of America’s fastest growing companies. SNC’s 55-year legacy of state-of-the art civil, military and commercial solutions includes delivering more than 4,000 space systems, subsystems and components to customers worldwide, and participation in more than 450 missions to space, including Mars.