T&D World Magazine

Program Automates Baseline Configuration Management of All Cyber Assets

TDi Technologies has announced the availability of the new, automated Baseline Configuration Management solution designed to provide managerial visibility and control over the BCM practice while eliminating the majority of sources where human error can result in unintentional device configuration changes that impact the overall security practice.

“Without automation, BCM is a costly operations activity that is difficult to manage and prone to mistakes that can leave the Utility provider vulnerable to cyber attack,” said Terry Schurter, TDi Technologies, VP of Marketing, “ConsoleWorks’ Baseline Configuration Management solution looks at the problem holistically by taking a device and platform agnostic approach for supporting all routable protocol devices.”

The utilities industry, in particular, is required to meet certain NERC-CIP requirements for establishing and retaining a set of secure configuration profiles across hundreds, often thousands, of cyber assets (reference NERC CIP-010-05 whitepaper from TDi Technologies at http://www.tditechnologies.com/our-customers/utilities). Manufacturer point solutions exist in a few cases today. However, the limited capabilities vary across manufacturers and the functionality is inadequate for addressing the basic NERC CIP requirements.

“While the obvious driver behind interest in a comprehensive BCM solution is driven by NERC-CIP regulations”, said Bill Johnson, TDi Technologies, CEO, “the ConsoleWorks BCM solution enables Utility providers to meet NERC-CIP requirements while simplifying operations and reducing manpower requirements – it addresses a real business challenge.”

ConsoleWorks automates baseline configuration management of all cyber assets from the control room, to the substation, to the pole. It periodically retrieves the current configuration of each monitored asset and compares it to the established baseline. If a difference is detected, an Event is created and logged and a notification is sent to a designated person for further assessment.

The ConsoleWorks BCM solution offers the following key functions:

  • Configuration Retrieval – automatic collection of actual device configurations
  • Baseline Establishment – designation of an approved configuration baseline
  • Auto-Comparison – comparison of current configuration against the baseline
  • Event Detection – generates events (alerts) when a difference is detected from the established baseline configuration and the current device configuration
  • Scheduling – frequency that comparisons are run
  • Manual Trigger – manual running of comparison
  • Historical Reference – the ability to maintain a number of historical baselines including all BCM events detected
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