Grantek and Dispel Partner and Launch Engineer-in-a-Box to Provide Remote Access for Operators, Vendors & OEMs
May 12, 2020
To help operators, vendors, and OEMs respond to access limitations during COVID-19, manufacturing solutions partner Grantek announces Engineer-in-a-Box, a remote access device powered by Dispel’s Moving Target Defense technology.
COVID-19 has disrupted the age-old practice of sending engineering teams on-site to maintain industrial control systems. Operators, OEMs, and equipment vendors are therefore turning to remote access tools as a means of keeping projects and systems running.
Unfortunately, the market lacks a remote access solution that deploys quickly enough to respond to OT’s needs but is still secure enough to meet IT’s requirements. Often, operations personnel turn to convenience to the detriment security in a time when security is needed more than ever.
Grantek – a specialist in the maintenance, support, and integration of industrial control systems – has built a plug and play hardware device to provide Operators, OEMs, and Vendors with secure remote access to their relevant systems. The product is called Engineer-in-a-Box.
“Operations staff are often stuck between a rock and hard place when it comes to remote access. They are constantly pressured to maintain uptime but when something happens, the only way they can get help remotely is through a request process which takes too long for them. We also saw an increase in remote access solutions being marketed but none of which leveraged technology with sufficient security for this purpose. That’s why we created Engineer-in-a-Box.” said Jacob Chapman, Director of Industrial IT & Cybersecurity at Grantek.
Engineer-in-a-Box provides rapid and secure access to OT networks. The solution is designed for those with unpredictable remote access needs, particularly those who require vendors to configure equipment remotely, and on short notice.
Its security and simplicity of use are the result of Grantek’s partnership with technology company Dispel, who engineered the underlying networks.
“Grantek is one of the most well-respected systems integrators out there, and they are good people,” said Ian Schmertzler, President of Dispel. “It’s our job to supply them with technology that will let them get in, solve the problem, and get out.”
Engineer-in-a-Box comes as a piece of hardware with preconfigured software. To install, simply, connect it to an ethernet port anywhere on an OT network. Once your issue is resolved, you can disconnect it. What makes this different from typical cellular gateways – which remain a poor practice – is the Moving Target Defense technology it is leveraging for the connection, and that the virtual computers on the other end self-create when a user logs in and self-destructs once the user disconnects. So the pathway exists only when you need it and the server on the other end exists only when it’s being used – saving you time, money, and significantly reducing any attack vector against your network.
For 40 years, top manufacturers in Food & Beverage, CPG and Pharmaceuticals have called upon Grantek to solve their most complex business and manufacturing challenges. Grantek automates Pharmaceutical and Food & Beverage manufacturing operations, including integration with business systems for seamless solutions. Grantek helps customers meet the stringent requirements and challenges of the 4th Industrial Revolution. Grantek’s team of professionals located in 17 offices across the globe deliver solutions to complex problems in Smart Manufacturing, Industrial Networking, Automation and Industrial Safety. Learn more at https://grantek.com/.
Dispel is the world’s leading provider of Moving Target Defense Networks; designed, built, and maintained in the United States. Founded in 2015, the cybersecurity company has offices in Austin, New York, Washington, D.C., Boston, Denver, and Tokyo. Dispel’s technology deploys custom networks to OT/ICS protecting utilities globally. Learn more at https://dispel.io.