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Report Reveals Growing Threat of Cyberattacks to Food Safety


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A robot working on a food factory's canning line.

Researchers at the University of Minnesota's Food Protection and Defense Institute have identified vulnerabilities to cyberattacks in food manufacturing and processing systems.

Credit: University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Cyberattacks pose a rising threat to food production and safety, according to researchers at the University of Minnesota's Food Protection and Defense Institute (FPDI).

The researchers identified the growing cybersecurity risk facing the food industry and provided industry-specific guidance to keep operations safe and secure.

The systems companies use for processing and manufacturing food contain many vulnerabilities that could be an appealing target for cyberattacks.

The researchers and manufacturers identified more than 200 industrial control system vulnerabilities in 2011, with that figure increasing each year through 2016.

The vulnerabilities are present in a wide variety of components from different vendors, making them difficult for companies to avoid. In addition, many of the systems were designed before cybersecurity was a concern, and use outdated operating systems on hard-coded passwords that allow attackers easy access.

From University of Minnesota Twin Cities
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Abstracts Copyright © 2019 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


 

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