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It’s All About Data Security


    Seamless Integration of OT and IT

    Secure cross-company communication based on OPC UA

    Establishing truly secure and utterly reliable data exchange is an increasingly fraught topic for integrators of production and management systems. Network complexity grows as more and more OT and IT applications join the fray. No less substantial is the rise in data transfer volumes and the effort needed for installation, setup and maintenance. And all of this is running on public cloud platforms that need shielding against external attack.

    Middleware is the Smart Choice

    Faced with Industrie 4.0 and the Industrial IoT, businesses need ways to migrate their siloed applications to coherent, integrated solutions. Steps have therefore been taken to link enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems and manufacturing execution systems (MES) with existing production components. The OPC UA (Unified Architecture) standard has established itself as the enabling technology for ensuring seamless data transfer between these various subsystems, allowing the production (operational technology, OT) and management (information technology, IT) domains to be tightly coupled together. One of the more recent OPC UA extensions, OPC UA Publisher/Subscriber, builds on this by offering an elegant solution for achieving interoperability between separate control systems.

    Yet network complexity – and with it the volume of data – rises exponentially in proportion to the OT and IT applications involved, as effort skyrockets for installation, configuration and maintenance. Other issues are the global distribution of production and inter-company networking as a potential chink in the armor for data theft.

    Middleware: A Key Component

    Industry bodies like the Industrie 4.0 platform have been tackling this important topic. The group’s position paper “Secure cross-company communication with OPC UA” offers a number of solution strategies here and highlights the advantages of an aggregating server. Softing Industrial is addressing this solution strategy with its dataFEED Secure Integration Server middleware component. This provides an abstract interface between the OT and IT domains based on the OPC UA standard, which it utilizes to the full for the purposes of interface abstraction and data aggregation.

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    dataFEED OPC Suite Extended

    The new version V5.10 of Softing’s dataFEED OPC Suite Extended offers MQTT subscriber functionality and extensive options for data preprocessing. Version V5.10 of Softing’s dataFEED OPC Suite Extended has been released. With the help of the new MQTT Subscriber, data can be received from an MQTT Broker and transmitted to other applications via OPC UA or written to a controller.Read More…

    Pub/Sub for OPC UA .NET Stack

    Softing Industrial announces the contribution of its publisher/subscriber (pub/sub) implementation to the OPC UA .NET Standard Stack, thereby improving the performance, reliability, and scalability of this open-source project. By contributing its pub/sub implementation to the OPC UA .NET Standard Stack, Softing continues its long-term commitment to the OPC UA Standard and the open-source initiative of the OPC Foundation. The pub/sub implementation is based on the User Datagram Protocol (UDP). It enables integration of OPC UA at the shop-floor level where UDP helps to establish the required low-power, low-latency, loss tolerating communication on LANs. Pub/sub also simplifies integration of OPC UA in scalable cloud-based applications where it enables deterministic machine control as well as bidirectional communication between the cloud and shop floor.Read More…