JAN-FEB 2018

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R emote access to local programmable logic controllers (PLCs), hu- man machine interfaces (HMIs), and other automation system components is becoming a requirement for many machine build- ers, plants, and facilities. Although many industrial networks were previ- ously configured with a router without a virtual private network (VPN), new installations should not do this because of the security risks. Although a VPN is a key element in a defense-in-depth strategy, imple- menting remote and secure connectivity to local components presents technical, cost, and resource allocation challenges. The two options pre- sented in this article address these issues in different ways. Each ap proach has advantages and design considerations (summarized in the table). Option 1 is a hosted VPN, and option 2 is a traditional VPN. 26 INTECH JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018 WWW.ISA.ORG Remote access to automation system components Advantages and design considerations for the two main methods of remote VPN access By Jonathan Griffith

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