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Assessing IT availability risks in smart factory networks

: Häckel, Björn; Hänsch, Florian; Hertel, Michael; Übelhör, Jochen

Fulltext ()

Business research : BuR. Online journal 12 (2019), No.2, pp.523-558
ISSN: 1866-8658
ISSN: 2198-3402 (Print)
ISSN: 2198-2627 (Online)
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer FIT ()
smart factory; risk assessment; IT availability risk; risk quantification; network structure analysis; investment decision support

Emerging smart manufacturing technologies combine physical production networks with digital IT systems, resulting in complex smart factory networks, which are especially vulnerable to IT security risks, such as IT component non-availabilities. Companies must employ extensive IT security measures to secure their production facilities. However, complex network structures and inherent dependencies of smart factory networks complicate corresponding investment decisions and in-crease the need for appropriate decision support. We develop a risk assessment model that supports companies in the investment decision-making process regarding IT security measures by identifying and evaluating the most critical areas of the information network while considering the underlying production network. For this purpose, IT availability risks are quantified by means of graph theory, matrix notation, and Value-at-Risk. Our model provides a structured approach, and considers network structures and interdependencies. The insights gained by our model present a profound economic basis for investment decisions on IT security measures. By applying our model in an exemplary real world setting, we analyze various IT security measures and their risk reduction effect.