A computerized maintenance management system, or CMMS, makes running any workshop or facility more manageable, straightforward, and efficient. Whether you run a production line, manufacturing plan, equipment distributor, or a school, a CMMS can come in handy.
Still, when you compile assets and documents into a single, digital place, you increase your facility’s security risk. After all, similar to other essential and non-essential software, CMMS platforms can be compromised. Understanding potential digital attacks and how to prevent them is critical to operating a successful CMMS integration.
Set Security Standards
The first step to securing your CMMS is setting strict security standards. Start by determining the desired level of security, which should correlate to your data sensitivity. Then make sure those standards are clear to your team members and anyone who has temporary or regular access to your system. Within your database, categorize your data and files into sub-groups ranked by priority, and dedicate more of your security resources to protecting more sensitive assets.
After setting your standards and informing your team, you need to enforce them using access management and monitoring systems. That way, only staff and independent contractors have access to data and software utilities they need to do their job. Doing so works as a mock network segmentation type, further securing your data from leaks and attacks.
Backup Your Data
Backing up critical data is your fail-safe in case of disaster. By having offline and up-to-date versions of your data backed up, you can protect assets from the repercussions of security breaches. Preventable attacks include ransomware that encrypts your data and holds it for ransom and technical errors such as system failures, viruses, power outages, and natural disasters that could ruin your central database.
To backup properly, you need a designated area for your copies. Locations are either physical hard drives your employees regularly update or cloud storage solutions. Either way, a backup strategy is pointless if team members don’t have a set data backup schedule or aren’t trained to save and transfer CMMS data and files properly.
Understand CMMS Functions
While there are general security measures you need to take to keep your primary system secure, each CMMS comes with a set of functions and pre-implemented security features you can enable or disable at will. Also, the location of your CMMS has a significant effect on the security level.
If you’re working with an offline CMMS, an internal network is necessary. While limiting contact with the open internet, this option is secure but can be bothersome to scale and update. With cloud CMMS, on the other hand, you can access from anywhere and is easy to scale as your needs change. However, because clouds are hosted online, you’d need additional security measures that your vendor can provide. Cloud CMMS allows flexibility and functionality without worrying much about security.
Both types of CMMS software include extensive settings menus that allow you to set and deny specific administrative and access permissions, from backups to remote and mobile access functions. To get the best option for your facility, research the best CMMS software to understand their differences, benefits, and weak points.
Initiate Login Tracking
Login tracking comes hand in hand with access management. In addition to limiting staff access to certain parts of your software, CMMS will also allow you to view and track logins in real-time. Using this function, you can identify suspicious activity, either from a malicious employee looking to launch an insider attack or an employee with compromised credentials.
Tracking login activity enables you to control software access easily. You can prevent low-level employees from accessing the system from outside a set geographical location or outside of work hours without seeking direct administrator permission.
Understand an Issue to Solve It
The first step to solving any issue you might come across is understanding it. All applications, from simple phone apps to management apps, are susceptible to cybersecurity risks.
Understanding how your particular CMMS works, in collaboration with your vendor, allows you to leverage pre-existing functions in your favor to increase security and reduce potential compromises. Since cybersecurity isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach and cyber threats are continually changing and evolving, your cybersecurity measures need to account for new risks to keep your data safe.