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Chuck Byers with Industry IoT Consortium
10th April 2023 • The Industrial Talk Podcast with Scott MacKenzie • The Industrial Talk Podcast with Scott MacKenzie
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Industrial Talk is onsite at the OMG Quarterly Standards Meeting and chatting with Chuck Byers, Chief Technology Officer with Industry IoT Consortium about "Collaborating and creating trustworthy industrial standards". Tune in and hear more about the importance of Industrial Standards and Nick's unique insights on this Industrial Talk. Finally, get your exclusive free access to the Industrial Academy and a series on “Why You Need To Podcast” for Greater Success in 2023. All links designed for keeping you current in this rapidly changing Industrial Market. Learn! Grow! Enjoy!


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Welcome to the Industrial Talk podcast with Scott Mackenzie. Scott is a passionate industry professional dedicated to transferring cutting edge industry focused innovations and trends while highlighting the men and women who keep the world moving. So put on your hard hat, grab your work boots, and let's get


thank you once again for joining Industrial Talk. And as absolutely thank you for your continued support. We are building a platform, a platform that celebrates industry professionals all around the world. Because you're bold, you're brave, you dare greatly you innovate, you collaborate, you're solving problems, and you're making the world a better place. Without a doubt. That's why we celebrate you here on Industrial Talk. And if you could tell by a little bit of the noise in the background, we are at O M G, q1 meeting, it's not a conference, it's a meeting. And it is a collection of professionals getting together and debating and making your life better and you don't even know it. That's what they're doing. That's what they do. So if you have any interest, in that you should get in contact with You will not be disappointed in a hot seat. As you can tell. Chuck is air Chuck Byers. He is the Chief Technology Officer at Industry IoT Consortium. Let's get cracking with the conversation.


Hey, thanks for having me, Scott. Looking forward to talking with you. Once again, we've been on a few of these before and I just love it.


Yeah, I they're a lot of fun. But But what makes it fun, Chuck, quite frankly, it's it's me live in my dust Discovery Channel dream. And I get to talk to you. And I get to talk to others. And I get to hear about all of the incredible innovation and, and conversations especially happened here. And never stops


that the entire world of consortium and standards development organizations there are they're always working to better the world. They're always working to improve trustworthiness and improve performance of networks and improve the way that you interact with anything with the transistor in it. That's what that's what really the folks in this room are about is is how the infrastructure associated with all those devices that you rely on on a minute by minute basis is put together.


See, I don't think we have an appreciation, because you are the unsung hero, you we don't know that it exists, we don't know that there's our world is in a positive way. We are driven by standards. And that's why we I mean, you guys are just untung I don't know how else to put it. I geek out on this stuff.


Think about the the USB thing that you used to plug in every device. Yeah, charge everything. That's a standard that you touch every day. But standards that you really can't touch every day are related to the way the data is operating inside of those machines, what's going on across that USB table, how we manage all of the security and privacy and safety of that kind of thing. It's it's a huge problem. There are literally reams and reams and reams of standards that this organization has put out describing all of that stuff.


I don't know I get all giddy and excited about it. And now we're here at at this OMG event and it it reflects a lot of the other consortiums. And it's just people getting together who are passionate about doing what is right. That's one thing. What are you at Industry IoT Consortium focused on,


o go. And there's hundreds of:


How does the Industry IoT Consortium, and the members and everybody that's passionate about that? Keep up with the velocity of the changes taking place within the market? And make sure that that the standards are properly being developed? And because use cases are constantly being developed, and, and it just never ends? How does? How does an organization like that? be nimble enough to do that?


Yeah, that's a ongoing challenge for us, I would say that the diversity of our membership, and the giant brains represented in our membership are really one of our important weapons in that struggle. Because you need to have people from all different organizations, Chip companies, equipment, companies, service companies, the network operators, you know, various kinds of governmental organizations, we're all we're all interconnected in a tight web, of sharing opinions, brainstorming ideas, and figuring out what we need to do in terms of best practices and reference architectures and the output product that we make, that helps drive the industry and the standards that the industry is creating.


The other area that is when you start mentioning trustworthiness, because, you know, this is a this is a global thing, right? Yes. And it's happening everywhere. And to some extent, or another to some degree, or another. One of the feedbacks that I get specifically in the field when talking to companies is like, one I hear you, I, I hear IoT, but IoT is becoming like this, this miscellaneous file. There's a lot of sort of confusion, I get it, I see the device. I know that. But it's like, I get it. Where do I start? And who do I trust? Not in that order. It's the trust thing, right. So


I see is, has a very deliberate definition of trustworthiness. And it consists of five different attributes that are applied in various ratios to depending on what the problem is. And here come the five. The first one is security in the standard cybersecurity sense. And I'm sure we've all heard that. The second one is privacy. Because this data is potentially personally identifiable and potentially highly private could be healthcare data, it could be data about where you're driving, or what you're buying at the grocery store, or whatever. The third astir attribute that we talked about in terms of trustworthiness is safety. So these systems are potentially controlling very sophisticated and dangerous devices. And remember, the Internet of Things is not just about sensors that are reading temperatures, it's about controlling things, it's about what's called actuators. And as soon as you add actuators to the mix, then you end up with a whole new set of problems. So sure, it's irritating if a if a card reader is compromised, and a bunch of credit card numbers go into the wild. But think about what happens if you compromise your reactor your refinery or locomotive, your kids implantable insulin pump, what happens if those are compromised? Now, rather than just having to pay somebody for two years of credit monitoring? You know, you're gonna have to figure out what happens when people get killed as a direct result of Internet of things being compromised. So the stakes are much higher for IoT devices, especially those devices that add actuators where a hacker can control the physical world.


digress quickly, because we have two more points on this. Yes, but I digress. When when I was at an event, and we were talking about CNCS. And these are connected devices. Now they're very sophisticated connected devices. And when you say compromised, you know, it just you can just say a millimeter, you can modify that whatever that part by a millimeter. Now it's out of spec, and you just, you know, whatever it might be and


then all the valves you make, and that's the NC device, you're gonna leak like I said, because it's a millimeter to split up. See, that's what's just gonna happen. I worry. I certainly worry about the whole manufacturing ecosystem. You know what happens if the welder gas flow is wrong and the welds are all contaminated, you might not know that they're a third as strong as they're supposed to be. But, you know, they're cosmetically the same but because you compromise the gas flow and maybe mask the sensor. You can do that if you're a hacker and all of a sudden, you know, every time Our spot welds are inept, inadequate. Yeah. And you know, that compromises the safety of that vehicle, it compromises its longevity, the


reality chuck it, it's happening. So we need to know that it's inevitable. And so we need it. You can, you can listen to chuck and get all nervous about what he's saying because it is it can be but but the reality is, is if you're not engaged and you're not figuring that out, it's happening whether you like it or not, you just it is. So let's


don't play ostrich, you know, you gotta play your head way up over the prairie and try to figure out what's going on. And certainly IOC has an entire set of security recommendations. We have a document called the industrial Internet security framework, yes, that you can search for those words. And it will give you very significant sets of recommendations on how to take your Internet of Things system and make it I almost said immune make it highly resistant to compromise.


Yeah. And again, for the listeners out there, these these frameworks, these documents that are being offered by IIC are thoroughly vetted. Oh, yeah. And vetted some more and debated. And so the product that sees the light of day and is offered into the marketplace. I feel comfortable.


I certainly do too. And I wouldn't have a problem, you know, riding on a train or submitting to an implantable medical device. Yeah, that was based on those recommendations, because those recommendations really do anticipate a lot of the attack vectors, a lot of the vulnerabilities and tend to modify their their recommendations based on the consequences of that compromise. Okay, we have two more points. So we talked about security, privacy, safety. The last two are related reliability and resilience. And reliability basically means you know, what happens if something fails, things inevitably fail transistors die, static electricity is apps, something a network goes down, whatever it is, we need to figure out how to continue the service, especially mission critical and life critical services in the presence of various failures. And we do that through various mechanisms of redundancy and reliability and different types of computer networking that can take over if the primary network fails. So we have lots of recommendations about how to connect your Internet of Things devices to the backbone of the internet, in order to give us measures of Reliability. Reliability is what happens if something fails, heart resilience is more like what happens if something's overloaded. What happens if, you know fiber optic connection is is compromised, what happens if there's a denial of service attack going on? The network is probably still working, the device is probably still accessible, but not with its full performance or capabilities. And under those circumstances, we have recommendations, on redundancy for processing, storage, networking, all of those functions, in order to try to make that network more reliable and more resilient. So that we can trust the service that's operating on that network, regardless of those unanticipated failure and overload consequences.


So here's an analogy that I like using quite quite a bit. So I like f1. So you have this car, this car is completely connected. And everybody sees exactly what's going on, can make the changes can see, they can do everything to optimize performance of that asset. And I think if that's like, that's the tip of that mountain that is like, this is gone. But I think that that if you're in manufacturing or industry in general, and you're not committed to figuring out how to be able to do the stuff that is necessary to see visibly see your, your asset, your business, I think you're gonna be missing out and I and you know, your competition is is definitely


doing it. Yeah, absolutely. I actually had the pleasure of visiting the McLaren Tech Center UK,


they're doing poorly in f1. Just I know,


ould expect that there's over:


Well said, well said, Chuck, absolutely. One of the areas that I think my perspective and in talking to many out there, the conversations around security, right? So all of this is great. But if you're not properly protected, in some way, shape, there's other areas. And what I'm finding, with many, like, one, when you start talking about security, people start going. They're just trying to prevent me from doing my work. That's one and then two. I don't understand it. So I'm not going to listen anyway. Right. Yes. But and then three, because I had been hacked, and I'm not going to I'm not going to air my dirty laundry and what that, but that conversation is so needed, and I find I see is a great way to have that conversation without, you know.


Yeah, we talked a lot about hypotheticals. Yeah. Even though those hypothetical scenarios are almost always grounded in somebody's recent experience. Yes, we don't we certainly don't air the dirty laundry details or proof or anything we take, if we say yeah, there's an opportunity to compromise this type of network or 5g, he's got these vulnerabilities or fiber optic can or can't be tapped all these kinds of questions. We we take them seriously. And we try to we try to understand that there's really no mechanism to air gap yourself from the internet. That's a term which very critical installations, they they disconnect all all the cables, there's no cables that go between that critical bubble and installations in the internet. It can't do that anymore, because you can't digitally transform your business app unless you have access to that whole thing. Absolutely. So what we're trying to do is try to figure out how to replug the wiring across the air gap, yet have the kind of security, trustworthiness and confidence that you had no, nobody can hack this thing. Even though there's lots of connections. Nobody can hack, and it turns out, they can hack it even when it was air gapped, because it was stupid people reach in their pocket, and they pull out one of those USB, right across the air gap. Yeah, so so on. So we, we as IAC are really working diligently to try to give advice. And one of the mechanisms that we've done to give that advice is what's called a security maturity model. It's a self assessment that you can do. And you can grab the security maturity model, self assessment instrument off of our website, I And you can just take it, and then you can get some information sort of a score on how secure or not secure your installation is. And then there's direct pointing to chapter and verse of our in an industrial Internet security framework.


Real quick, some people don't want to take that assessment because they just don't want to find the results because once they find the results, they have to take action, which is a good thing. Don't get me wrong, but it's so funny when you say that it's like I can see okay, let's answer it right or correctly.


It's not it's not like ice is gonna rat you out. If you have a lousy security score, because it's all it's all, you know, you download the thing you fill in the spreadsheet itself scores. It's not like you're, you're sharing anything with anybody that's going to be discoverable in litigation. Things that people worry about. Everybody does. Yeah, but but in general, you're better off knowing. And let's say that you were you were one of those playing ostrich head in the sand Canyon. That's, you know, thought security is somebody else's problem. If you just take the hour or two, it might take you to do the self assessment. And it turns out, your score is really lousy, you might not start to act immediately. But you might, for example, decide that you're not going to put your pre released quarterly report information on the public internet at this point, because it's easy enough for your corporate network to be to be compromised. So knowing is always better than not knowing acting is always better than not acting, but knowing without acting is still useful.


I again, Chuck hitting it out of the park in a big, doggone way. Is there anything that is sort of unique with this particular meeting that you want to highlight and tell the listeners outside of the the five things that are just absolutely home, run home run home run home? Yeah, yeah, your five for five


we are, the IC tends to, you know, have a few things that we work on as a sort of a thrust sort of repeated common theme. And, and this trustworthiness thing was our thrust two or three years ago, and it's gotten huge traction across the industry. Digital Transformation is the one that we've been working on for the last couple of years. The new thing, the thing that we're starting on in this meeting and intends to continue on for the coming year or two is sustainability. Yeah. So the Internet of Things, it turns out is very useful to all of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. And if you just search for you, and SDG Sustainable Development Goals, you'll see that there's 17 goals that the United Nations has provided for the human race, to basically make our ride on the planet a little smoother. Yeah, and, and there's around those 17 goals. And it's things like energy efficiency, and health care and poverty and food security, those those are the kinds of things that those goals are, there's there's a couple of them that are sort of work related to industrial processes, and systems of infrastructure that we think that I see is particularly interested in all that we're going to do, we can all 17 goals. Below those goals, those 17 goals are 169 sort of recommended areas of action. And we've been doing diligent analysis of all 169 And we see that I see is potentially got Internet of Things input for about half of those so well over, you know, well over 50 or 75 of those things, we think we got an opportunity to do something. And all of our workgroups and task groups have been chartered with let's figure out what we can do to help sustainability and by extension help to help save the planet and improve the lot of the majority of the human race. I'm always


I'm always fascinated by how how all of this, this energy and the people and moving around and all of this stuff, absolutely comes together and, and, and moves forward. Because, you know, when every time I have these conversations, what about what about this? What about that? And I can appreciate what your organization is accomplishing? Because it's like, it's like herding cats. It's certainly yes. Smart cats, cats that have a passion to really help him but it's just I How do you pull that all together and do something?


Yeah, it was once said that centers development work is like herding cats. That's where it's just like herding feral cats. You know? That's kind of where I that's kind of one of my challenges. The new CTO Yeah, I'm trying to figure out how to hear it heard this this conglomeration of feral cats, all of which are probably smarter than me. That's my that's my task.


And no, no, they are there some brilliant people, and is like, oh, gosh, Chuck, how do they get a hold of you? And how do they become part of the Industry IoT Consortium?


Didn't go to ai And there's lots of resources on the resource page to learn about all these publications and maturity models I talked about, and there's info available or you can just send it to Byers. Byo ers at I and you can reach me directly


That's Chuck. Chuck Byers right there. Thank you so much that Absolutely. All right, we're gonna wrap it up on the other side, we're going to have all the contact information and really, look, go out to their website, find out more, get that information, pull it down, see how thorough it is, and and really experience just the thoroughness of those those documents. All right, we're gonna wrap it up on the outside. So stay tuned, we will be right back.


You're listening to the Industrial Talk, Podcast Network.


All right, once again, thank you very much for joining Industrial Talk. And thank you for your continued support. We are building, building a platform that is dedicated to industrial professionals, I say it all the time. You cannot deny that. Now. That was Chuck Industry IoT Consortium. You know what I got out of that conversation. One. He's smart to the consortium is a collection of people that are truly working to solve problems creating trustworthiness. That's what they do all the time. If you that was just q1 I did to queue for the meeting in Austin, and they are passionate, they are passionate of solving problems and creating incredible standards that help us succeed. That's what they are all about. Industry, IoT, you'll have all the contact information for Chuck and his team out there on Industrial Talk. And once again, you have to be about collaborating this stuff is just an educating and innovating. The stuff is happening so quickly. And the only way that I know is that you got to collaborate. You're not you need to get engaged, you need to work with people like Chuck and others, to come up with solutions that help you create that business that is resilient. Continue to educate, focus on collaborating, and one and whether you like it or not innovate, all right. O M G, this was q1, put that on your calendar, be a part of it. Look at on All the consortium is out there people will be brave. dare greatly I say it all the time, hanging out with Chuck, and you're gonna change the world. We're gonna have another great conversation coming from omg so stay tuned.



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