All too often, there are news stories about exposed Industrial IoT (IIoT) traffic that was a safety or security threat. By routing the traffic through the ENF, the chance of such exposure is eliminated.
It isn’t necessary for malicious actors to take control of a system or alter data to cause harm – even reading the data could be a security, safety, or competitive problem. By being able to read IIoT data, a competitor may be able to determine the capacity at which equipment is running, maintenance schedules, or even details of proprietary processes. These could give a competitive advantage.
For critical infrastructure, IIoT data could divulge information that, in the wrong hands, could cause safety and security breaches. A foreign agent may be able to determine the location and destination of rolling stock.
Traffic routed to the ENF is encrypted at the source using industry-standard TLS, similar to using a VPN to connect to a corporate network. Since the endpoint and the ENF access point are mutually authenticated, we can be certain that the traffic has not been intercepted, observed, or manipulated.