24 Jul 2024

AUTOMATION FOR MANUFACTURING

Surging OT cybersecurity sales could outstrip IT

The global market for industrial cybersecurity could more than double by 2028

The global market to provide cybersecurity for industrial systems will more than double from US$12.75bn in 2023 to around US$21.6bn by 2028 – a CAGR of 9.2% – according to a new report from ABI Research. It suggests that spending on cyber-protection for OT (operational technology) and IoT (Internet of Things) applications could overtake spending on IT security because, while the number of laptops, tablets and other IT-related devices has hit a plateau, OT applications are continuing to grow.

ABI predicts that network security and segmentation technologies will be the fastest-growing OT cyber-technologies, followed by identity and access management and end-point protection.

“The fact is that OT and IoT devices are just beginning to expand and are far more numerous,” says Michael Amiri, senior industrial cybersecurity analyst at ABI. “An industrial plant could have tens of thousands of sensors, routers and PLCs, all of which must be protected from malicious actors. OT cybersecurity revenues are becoming integral to the overall cybersecurity market.

“Every industrial sector imaginable is embracing some digitalisation and concept of Industry 4.0,” he adds “As a result, the potential for cyber-threats has also increased, prompting a growing demand for robust defensive measures. This market has lots of space for growth, as there is considerable capacity to expand smart industries.”

Technologies that secure OT networks now offer enhanced capabilities using AI and behavioural traffic analysis to detect and respond to OT-specific network threats. Demand for these security products is seeing strong growth, according to ABI.

Furthermore, segmentation technologies are playing a key role in securing OT traffic. They not only provide cost-effective partitioning, but also allow security controls and data flows to be customised for each isolated segment. ABI Research predicts that segmentation will generate the biggest revenues in the OT cybersecurity market.

“Recent macroeconomic pressures do not seem to have impacted the OT cybersecurity market,” Amiri concludes. “On the contrary, rapid digitalisation and escalating geopolitical tensions have contributed to increased spending and market revenues, especially in sectors most prone to cyberattacks, such as oil and gas, utilities, mining and manufacturing. These are sectors where OT cybersecurity providers might want to direct their marketing efforts.”

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