Protecting Water and Wastewater Systems from Cyber Threats | Safeguarding Critical Infrastructure

June 6, 2024
Research shows that there has been an increase in the number of cyber incidents or IT/OT security related breaches water organization experienced in the last 12 months. This statistic is up 60% since the 2021 research. Join this webinar to learn more about the impact cybersecurity can have to protect your critical infrastructure.

June 6, 2024
2:00 PM ET / 1:00 PM CT / 11:00 AM PT / 7:00 PM GMT 
Duration: 1 hour
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Drinking water and wastewater systems are an attractive target for cyberattacks because they are a lifeline to citizens and organizations worldwide.   Recent incidents have garnered media attention as potential threats to water systems endanger public health and the environment. This critical infrastructure sector often lacks the resources and technical capacity to adopt rigorous cybersecurity practices. 
To address the pervasive and challenging risk of cyberattacks on drinking water systems, Fortinet partnered with Wastewater Digest and Waterworld Magazine to gather insights from leaders on the cybersecurity priorities for these organizations.  The results show that there has been an increase in the number of cyber incidents or IT/OT security related breaches organization experienced in the last 12 months, up 60% since the 2021 research.  Most organizations or agencies rank securing remote access, visibility to network-connected systems / assets, securing wireless access and threat intelligence as the areas receiving the most focus in the coming 12 months.  
This supports the priority the White House is giving, as highlighted in a recent letter to Governors, to cybersecurity for water and wastewater systems in the United States.  The letter calls for action to secure water systems against the increasing risks from and consequences of these attacks.  This webinar will address the: 

  • Changing technology priorities, with a shift in focus towards improving system resilience and accommodating digital transformation.   
  • Responsibility for cybersecurity, while most often aligns with Head of Information Technology (IT), ultimately, all employees share some responsibility for cybersecurity. 
  • Critical need for Situational Awareness which indicates without detection methods, cyberattacks can be “invisible” until it’s too late.  
  • Cybersecurity educational imperative points to an improved understanding of what needs to change implying a need for cybersecurity training to create a cybersecurity culture throughout the organization.

With the growing attack surface due to the advent of smart meters, rapid growth in sensors and automation, predictive analytics, digital twins, and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), cybersecurity must be a top priority. 


Richard Springer 
Director, Operational Technology  

Rich Springer is the Director of OT Solutions Marketing at Fortinet.  In this role, Rich works alongside regional marketing teams, OT product management and OT threat researchers to promote the Fortinet Fabric of OT Solutions including network security, zero-trust, security operations and AI-powered threat intelligence for IT/OT converged and OT market segments.  Previously, Rich was the Head of Industrial Cyber Strategy & Development for Tripwire managing the Industrial cyber product business for Belden, including the Hirschmann and Tripwire product lines.  

While evolving in the business of cyber security software and hardware development, Rich provides an operational background as a prior global head of SCADA in wind energy and across various roles in the semiconductor industry and the submarine nuclear Navy.  He has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Oregon State University and resides in Portland, Oregon.  Rich is excited to lead, educate, and develop network and cyber security solutions for his customers and global cyber community. 

Rod Locke 
Director of Product Management - OT 

Rod has been in the OT security industry for over 15 years, working in vulnerability testing, OT-specific network security, and embedded product security in past roles at Wurldtech, GE Digital, and Sierra Wireless. Rod is a Director of Product Management at Fortinet, focused on OT threat protection.  

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