European SCADA market analyzed in new report

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• Investments to boost the SCADA market in the power and water and wastewater sectors

Oct. 8, 2010 -- Research and Markets has announced the addition of Frost & Sullivan's new report "Strategic Analysis of the European SCADA Market" to their offering.

The key objective of this research service is to provide an analysis of the key trends in the European SCADA market for the period 2006 to 2016. With a number of end-user markets affected due to recession, this study determines the impact of recession on this market. Analysis by each industry have been discussed and analysed. Market drivers and restraints along with the industry challenges have been mentioned and their impact on a time scale is discussed. A comprehensive analysis of the market share for each region has also been mentioned. The research also highlights the trend across different European regions.

This Frost & Sullivan research service titled Strategic Analysis of the European SCADA Market provides a thorough analysis of the industry challenges as well as market drivers and restraints against a backdrop of the financial turmoil. The research offers total revenue forecasts until 2016 for process and discrete industries. In this research, Frost & Sullivan's expert analysts thoroughly examine the following end-user sectors: oil and gas, power, water and wastewater and others, including plant-level SCADA (food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, chemicals and pulp and paper) and automotive and transportation. The following product sectors are also covered: software, hardware and services.

Investments to Boost the SCADA Market in the Power and Water and Wastewater Sectors
SCADA is among the most rapidly growing control systems markets in Europe, but there has been a major change in the number of manufacturers operating in this space. This is partly due to the more distributed and global nature of production across the world as well as the challenges faced by the key sectors like oil and gas and water and wastewater, as new reserves become increasingly remote and difficult to access and the pressure on water supplies increases. Manufacturers that recognise these challenges and lead technological development initiatives to meet increasingly complex requirements will survive over the next decade. Booming economies in Eastern Europe and the stable and growing German market are set to promote heavy capital investments, notes the analyst of this research. The increase in investments in Western Europe and the North Sea, upstream operations and the greater demand for energy, retrofits, and the upcoming large gas and oil pipelines are some of the key factors driving the SCADA market. The key focus of industries today is to achieve operational excellence in all aspects of their businesses. Hence, they look for automation systems as a method to achieve operational effectiveness and better value for money in their capital investments. At the same time, rising population and expanding cities that demand more power, water and infrastructure for sustenance are also providing a fillip to market prospects.

By initiating commands through the SCADA system based on tariff information, more efficient use of energy can be supported, remarks the analyst. By using historical data collected by the SCADA system and stored in a data warehouse, it is possible to predict the peaks and troughs in demand. In these types of city- and country-wide distributed wide area networks and metropolitan area networks, SCADA systems are considered as ideal solutions over other substitutes. Moreover, major investments are required in the European electric utility and water and wastewater sectors due to the high availability of funding.

Ensuring Enhanced Cyber Security is the Key to Promoting Uptake
One of the key challenges faced by manufacturers in the European SCADA market is ensuring enhanced cyber security. Cyber threats demand the allocation of extended resources towards risk management. There are two distinct threats to a modern SCADA system. First is the threat of unauthorised access to the control software, whether human access or changes induced intentionally or accidentally by virus infections and other software threats residing on the control host machine. Second is the threat of operators or engineers who download configuration data to the wrong device or faulty control devices that flood the control network and, thus, bring it to a halt. In many cases, there is rudimentary or no security on the actual packet control protocol. Thus, anyone who can send packets to the SCADA device can control it.

"More vendors of SCADA and control products have begun to address these risks in a basic sense by developing lines of specialised industrial firewall and VPN solutions for TCP/IP-based SCADA networks, states the analyst. Additionally, application white listing solutions are being implemented because of their ability to prevent unauthorised application changes without the performance impacts of traditional antivirus scans. Furthermore, the ISA Security Compliance Institute (ISCI) is emerging to formalise SCADA security testing. ISCI is conceptually similar to private testing and certification that vendors have been performing since 2007. Eventually, standards being defined by ISA99 WG4 will supersede the initial industry consortia efforts, but probably not before 2011. The challenge is not only to implement effective security measures, but also to educate people in the plant like operators and engineers as well as System Integrators and other SCADA developers about the importance of security, concludes the analyst.

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