Tag: industrial cybersecurity

Revolutionizing the RNG Industry with AI

Transforming RNG with AI
Co-Written by Karl Nicholas, Business Development Manager


The Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) industry is experiencing remarkable growth as the world seeks sustainable and eco-friendly energy sources. As this industry expands, it encounters unique challenges that demand innovative solutions. Fortunately, as part of a larger digitalization journey – which encompasses technologies such as digital twin, advanced analytics, and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) – Artificial Intelligence (AI) has emerged as a game-changer, offering transformative capabilities to optimize operations and maximize efficiency. In this installment of our Digital Transformation blog series, we will explore five compelling use cases where AI can revolutionize the RNG industry, enhancing predictive maintenance, quality control, process optimization, anomaly detection, and predictive modeling.


Predictive Maintenance

One of the critical challenges in the RNG industry is ensuring the smooth operation of complex equipment. RED Group leverages advanced AI algorithms to analyze sensor data and equipment performance, enabling predictive maintenance. By monitoring the condition of crucial components such as compressors and boilers, RED Group’s AI solutions can both identify patterns and anomalies that indicate potential failures or maintenance requirements, as well as provide the opportunity to extend preventative maintenance intervals if the equipment is showing no warning signs. These proactive approaches minimize downtime, reduce maintenance costs, and optimize overall plant efficiency.

Quality Control

Maintaining consistent and high-quality RNG products is crucial for the industry’s credibility and market competitiveness. AI offers a powerful solution by monitoring the composition and quality of incoming and outgoing gases. Advanced techniques such as gas chromatography or mass spectrometry can be integrated with AI processes to analyze data in real-time. This enables precise monitoring and control of the RNG composition, ensuring that the final product meets rigorous standards consistently.

Process Optimization

Efficient and sustainable RNG production relies heavily on optimizing complex processes. AI can analyze vast amounts of data collected during the production process and make real-time adjustments to optimize operations. By continuously monitoring temperature, pressure, flow rates, and other relevant variables, AI algorithms can identify opportunities to reduce energy consumption, enhance yields, and improve overall process efficiency. These optimizations not only reduce costs but also contribute to greener and more sustainable RNG production.

Anomaly Detection

In an industry where even minor disruptions can lead to significant losses, the ability to detect anomalies and address them promptly is crucial. AI can monitor data streams in real-time, detecting anomalies that may indicate equipment malfunctions, leaks, or other operational issues. By leveraging machine learning algorithms, AI systems can quickly recognize abnormal patterns and notify plant operators, enabling them to take immediate action to prevent costly downtime and optimize safety.

Predictive Modeling

Making informed decisions based on accurate forecasts is a key factor in the success of RNG plants. AI can utilize historical and real-time data to create predictive models that forecast production levels, feedstock availability, and market trends. By analyzing a range of variables, such as weather patterns, demand fluctuations, and regulatory changes, AI-powered predictive models provide plant operators with valuable insights to optimize operations, plan investments, and stay ahead of the competition.


Take Away

The RNG industry stands at the forefront of renewable energy, offering a sustainable alternative to traditional natural gas. By embracing AI technologies, RNG plants can unlock immense potential for efficiency, productivity, and competitiveness. From predictive maintenance to quality control, process optimization, anomaly detection, and predictive modeling, AI empowers the industry to overcome challenges and achieve new levels of performance. By harnessing the capabilities of AI, RNG companies can secure a greener future and contribute to a sustainable energy landscape.

Ready to unlock the full potential of AI in the RNG industry? Contact us today to learn how RED Group can help revolutionize your operations and drive your RNG plant towards greater success!


Karl Nicholas is a technology enthusiast and brings many years of experience working and managing various projects in areas such as Cybersecurity, Engineering, IoT, Digital Transformation, and more.

Industrial Cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and Digitalization: The Future of Manufacturing

Industrial Cybersecurity & Digitalization: The Future of Manufacturing

The manufacturing industry is undergoing a digital transformation. The journey towards modernization and digitalization via the use of artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), and other technologies are changing the way that products are designed, manufactured, distributed, and delivered. This transformation is also creating new challenges for industrial cybersecurity.

As manufacturing systems become more connected, they are also becoming more vulnerable to cyberattacks. Threat actors can exploit vulnerabilities in these systems to gain access to sensitive data or to disrupt operations. In some cases, cyberattacks intend to cause physical damage to equipment or facilities.

To address these challenges, manufacturers need to adopt a comprehensive approach to industrial cybersecurity. This approach should include the following elements:

  • Asset identification and inventory: Manufacturers need to identify and inventory all their critical assets, including both physical and digital assets. This will help them to understand their risk exposure and to prioritize their security efforts.
  • Vulnerability & Risk assessments: Manufacturers need to regularly assess their systems for vulnerabilities. This will help them to identify and fix security weaknesses before they can be exploited by hackers.
  • Security controls: Manufacturers need to implement security controls to protect their systems from cyberattacks, and ideally, link them to business drivers/outcomes. These controls can include firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and access controls.
  • Response Planning: Manufacturers must develop and implement the appropriate actions to be taken following a cybersecurity event.
  • Recovery: Manufacturers need to take actions to return to normal operations in a timely manner to reduce the impact from cybersecurity events.

NIST Framework: Identify, Protect, Detect, Respond, Recover

By taking these steps, manufacturers can help to protect their systems from cyberattacks and to ensure the continued safety and security of their operations. In addition, manufacturers can also benefit from the use of AI in industrial cybersecurity. AI can be used to automate tasks such as vulnerability assessment and threat detection. This can free up human resources to focus on other tasks, such as evaluating and implementing new security controls and training employees.

AI can also be used to develop new security solutions that are specifically designed for industrial environments. For example, AI can be used to develop self-learning intrusion detection systems that can adapt to new threats as they emerge.

The use of AI in industrial cybersecurity is still in its early stages, but it has the potential to revolutionize the way that manufacturers protect their systems from cyberattacks. As AI technology continues to develop, it is certain to play an increasingly crucial role in industrial cybersecurity.

Some of the many benefits to implementing industrial cybersecurity measures include:

  • Increased safety: Industrial cybersecurity measures can help to protect workers from injury or death by preventing cyberattacks that could cause physical damage to equipment or facilities.
  • Lowered Risk: Industrial cybersecurity measures can lower risk of exposure and financial losses due to things such as ransom, legal risks, etc.
  • Reduced downtime: Industrial cybersecurity measures can help to reduce downtime by preventing cyberattacks that could disrupt operations.
  • Improved efficiency: Industrial cybersecurity measures can help to improve efficiency by preventing cyberattacks that could disrupt supply chains.
  • Protected intellectual property: Industrial cybersecurity measures can help to protect intellectual property by preventing cyberattacks that could steal trade secrets or proprietary information.
  • Increased compliance: Industrial cybersecurity measures can help organizations to comply with regulations such as Federal Nuclear and Energy Regulatory Commission orders and rules, or sector-specific cybersecurity plans.


Take Away

Industrial cybersecurity is a critical issue for manufacturers. RED Group supports organizations in implementing industrial cybersecurity measures, empowering manufacturers to protect their systems from cyberattacks and ensure the continued safety and security of their operations. Contact us today to learn more and get started on your digital transformation journey.


Check out the next installments of our Digital Transformation series:

Creating Zero-Trust Security Architecture

Create Zero-Trust Security Architecture
Written by Garrett Williams, Senior OT Security Consultant


What is Zero-Trust Security?

Zero-trust is the practice of shrinking the cybersecurity perimeter and eliminating inherent trust in your environment. The focus is on using technology and up-to-date methodologies as tools to get security as close as possible to each individual asset or components within a control system.

For example, instead of a security zone being the entire manufacturing plant, specific HMIs and historians are grouped together to minimize the attack surface that a security team needs to manage. Between each grouping may be virtual networking divisions, physical devices or other mechanisms that allow for alerting and monitoring centrally.

Security solutions must be dynamic to keep up with modern threats – that is the only way to ensure your overall architecture has strong foundations to handle the security required for ongoing operations. With Industrial Control Systems (ICS), that means preventing unauthorized and unwanted access to operational technology (OT) that could have caused a disruption in the availability of services. The Zero-Trust model utilizes strong cybersecurity tools and methodologies to create an environment that is inherently secure as opposed to being inherently available.

So, where do you start? Every cybersecurity-related vendor now utilizes the buzzwords ‘zero- trust security’ and ‘false claims’ to sell the full package solution, but most products only add and strengthen the bricks within one or more pillars that complete your cybersecurity architecture. To create a truly secure environment, you’ll need a partner who can help develop the bigger picture.

Developing the “Bigger Picture”

To build a strong cybersecurity program, there are a number of cornerstone methodologies – or “pillars” – that can be implemented. Below are the most fundamental of these pillars:

Strong Asset Management:

Having an asset inventory is critical for security; it is the basis for most methodologies. Security requires a few different components to allow it to function at its best. When deciding what these pieces are, you should ask yourself questions such as:  What are we protecting? How much is it worth? Where is it? These questions must be addressed on a continuous basis in order to have strong asset management within an organization.

Some examples of assets are computerized equipment, generated data, software and/or applications, and even services. Assets should be ranked or prioritized. A common practice for control systems is doing a crown jewel analysis, which are devices and processes most critical for operation.

Least Privilege

Least privilege is giving the absolute minimal amount of access to resources necessary to do one’s job. An organization needs to define roles and the specific responsibilities that fall under each role. Only then can you create strong policies that restrict the appropriate access to resources during the appropriate time.

Dynamic IAM MFA

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) successfully defeats most password guessing and credential hijacking attacks. However, MFA by itself is not insurmountable. We are constantly creating and strategizing new ways to authenticate rightful users to the resources they need to do their jobs. Flexibility is required with security tool and technique selection.

The strongest and most effective way of authenticating users and devices is by combining multiple methods to create one strong policy. Identity Management can be very arduous and granular – it is paramount to understand how your organization defines and validates identities, as well as represents those identities digitally within your environment. Remember, the goal is strong discriminative authentication policies that do not inconvenience operations.

Build defensible networks with segmentation plus monitoring

Group and separate your network based on asset attributions, how they transact with each other, and their value to the business. The point in which one security zone interacts with any other should be digitally monitored. Monitoring is set up and networks are separated using virtual networking solutions or hardware solutions such as firewalls and unidirectional gateways.

In a zero-trust architecture, a defensible network serves dual purposes. These checkpoints can serve as booby traps and alert your team of adversaries in your environment. Network segmentation in addition to monitoring also gives you the option to defend yourself against an attack. For example, if you experience a ransomware attack, a segmented network can help prevent the spread of malware from one security zone or group of assets to another.

Your Partner in Cybersecurity

A zero-trust architecture establishes network security from the inside out, starting with the asset(s) or security zone. Sometimes, with a little bit of help, you can implement zero-trust architecture with little to no cost. There are many security-enabled features inside the networking, OS-based HMIs, and workstation systems currently used within most OT environments.

To help you transform your environment into a zero-trust security model, you need a partner that not only helps you invest, but also consults you on how to address cyber threats with existing capabilities. It is essential to have security-aware people, secure processes, and secure technologies.

RED Group is your partner in implementing zero-trust security architecture throughout your industrial environment. We can get started by evaluating your current cybersecurity program maturity and assessing how and where you can implement better cybersecurity tools and improve your cyber security posture. Contact us today to begin working on a roadmap to secure your environment.

Garrett Williams is an OT cybersecurity professional with an extensive history of building and leading high performing teams.

Cybersecurity – and Resilience – in Shipbuilding

Cybersecurity - and Resilience - in Shipbuilding
Written by David Bacque, VP of Operations and Director of OT Security


“Cybersecurity” is a broad term, and the implications are more far-reaching than we typically consider – it isn’t just important for keeping our onshore systems safe. While cybersecurity and cyber resilience are certainly important to the health of all land-based IT/OT infrastructure, they are imperative for keeping ships and vessels secure, as well. Maritime cybersecurity is unique in the fact that the vessel itself is isolated from onshore systems but needs to integrate internally as well as be able to back up to prevent data loss while at sea.

The Challenge

Shipbuilders build ships – they have expertise around the process of engineering and constructing a ship – but often lack expertise in securing and integrating the modern electronic systems being delivered with various equipment packages. Vessels are comprised of many subsystems containing various degrees of complexity, automation, and integration which are required to work together for the safe and efficient operation of the vessels. While the package suppliers have expertise in building the subsystems, no one vendor, nor the shipbuilder, has the expertise to deliver a cohesive system and meet the cybersecurity expectations of modern ship owners. To equip a vessel with the tools and processes needed to secure its systems, an external cybersecurity specialist is often commissioned to evaluate and prescribe the measures necessary to meet the asset owner’s expectations.

The Solution

A clearly defined cybersecurity program needs to be created to communicate the asset owner’s security expectations while collaborating with suppliers to deliver secure systems. The cybersecurity program should align with the project phases and be tracked along with other project deliverables. Using our project security assurance process, RED Group has aligned cybersecurity into all aspects of the shipbuilding lifecycle:

  • Standards and requirements definition – align customer requirements with industry standards to create project-specific cybersecurity specifications.
  • Purchasing Specifications – build cybersecurity into the procurement process and include cybersecurity expectations into supplier contracts.
  • System Assessments – review and assess supplier and engineering documentation to validate alignment with standards and requirements.
  • Remediation Tracking – Identify gaps and coordinate with vendors to remediate
  • Acceptance Testing – witness and verify compliance with specifications during factory or site acceptance testing.

RED Group can Help

When your business is building ships, cybersecurity is not always at the forefront of considerations. Floating, propulsion, steering and navigation – these are the things that make a ship a ship. Not always considered, but no less important, is securing the systems onboard. RED Group has the expertise needed to ensure your vessel meets your client’s needs and expectations regarding the protection and recovery of the systems onboard. Contact us to find out how partnering with RED Group can help you deliver a ship that exceeds your clients’ expectations.

David Bacque, an experienced cybersecurity and operational technology (OT) professional, has led, advised on and delivered OT projects and ICS security initiatives with industrial clients around the world.