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PLC Virtualization Dragos S4 2019

Virtualizing Industrial Controllers (PLCs/DCS Controllers) represents a fundamental shift in the industrial automation industry. Most industries have fully embraced virtualization as a means to support reliability, scalability and resource optimization. However, the industrial control system industry has been slow to adopt virtualization into automation controllers fully. These slides are from Austin Scott's S4 2019 presentation and outlines the benefits of industrial controller virtualization and why automation vendors see this as a threat to their business model. The slides describe a virtualized PLC deployment at a large refinery in North America that allowed them to scale to support the massive size of the plant and includes: - What is PLC virtualization? - A brief history of PLC virtualization - Challenges with PLC virtualization - The benefits of PLC/Controller virtualization - Commodity controllers
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Documenttranscript
  • 1. PLC VIRTUALIZATION Austin Scott CISSP OSCP GICSP Principal Threat Analyst @ Dragos Threat Operations Center
  • 2. HOW DO WE DEFINE VIRTUALIZATION? A method ofabstractinganunderlyingtechnologylayer whichmakessoftware lookand behave like specific hardware.
  • 3. WHY VIRTUALIZE PLCS? COST FLEXIBILITY SUPPORT PERFORMANCE #1 #2 #3 #4
  • 4. 01 02 03 !!! Riskof cybersecurity vulnerabilities in commodityhardware. Consolidation,resiliency, and manageability. Hardened / cyberresilient Linux machinesto hostVMs. Virtual containeraround criticalICS components. ARE THERE CYBERSECURITY BENEFITS TO PLC VIRTUALIZATION?
  • 5. WHAT ATTRIBUTES HAVE MADE THE PLC A SUCCESS? 01 Reliable Will runautonomouslyforyearswithoutfail 02 Industrial Withstandsin anindustrialenvironment 03 Modular Expandabletomeet processrequirements 04 Maintainable Is easytoprogramandsupport
  • 6. Level 5-Enterprise Level 4-Plant Level 3– Operations Support Level 2– Supervisory Control Level 1– Control Devices Level 0-Instrumentation VIRTUALIZATION IN TODAY’S OT ENVIRONMENTS FREQUENTLY VIRTUALIZED RARELY VIRTUALIZED
  • 7. WHY ARE SOME SITES VIRTUALIZED TODAY? Level 2– Supervisory Control Level 1– Control Devices CONTROLLERS REMOTE IO RACKS CPU UTILIZATION #ERROR! #ERROR! #ERROR! #ERROR! #ERROR! #ERROR! #ERROR! #ERROR!
  • 8. WHY ARE SOME SITES VIRTUALIZED TODAY? Level 2– Supervisory Control Level 1– Control Devices CONTROLLERS REMOTE IO RACKS CPU UTILIZATION VIRTUAL CONTROLLERS
  • 9. OTHER USE CASES FOR CPU VIRTUALIZATION TODAY PLC SIMULATORS Simulated PLC for logic development and simulation. RESEARCH Product development and vulnerability research. DCS CONTROLLERS DCS Testing and development environments.
  • 10. BUT … CPU VIRTUALIZATION IS ONLY PART OF THE SOLUTION CARDS BACKPLANE CPU
  • 11. LATENCY TOLERANCE IT virtualization (x86) is designed for general- purpose workloads where throughput takes priority over latency. In OT,anydeviationfromthe required latencywill causea processtrip. 250 µs 280 µs 800 µs Motion Control [1] Electrical Control [2] Process Control [3] ESTIMATED PLC BACKPLANE LATENCY TOLERANCE [1] C. E. Pereira and P. Neumann, Industrial Communication Protocols, S. Y. Nof, Ed. Heidelberg, Germany: Springer-Verlag, 2009. [2] L. Kean, “Microcontroller to Intel architecture conversion: PLC using Intel atom processor,” Intel Corp., Santa Clara, CA, USA, White Paper, 2010. [3] S. Balacco and C. Lanfear, “The embedded software strategic market intelligence program 2002/2003 vol. I: Embedded systems market statistics,” Venture Develop. Corp., Mill Valley, CA, USA, Tech. Rep., 2003.
  • 12. CAN WE ACHIEVE THE REQUIRED LATENCY IN A REALTIME VM? [1] Tiago Cruz, Paulo Simões, and Edmundo Monteiro “Virtualizing Programmable Logic Controllers: Toward a Convergent Approach” - IEEE EMBEDDED SYSTEMS LETTERS, VOL. 8, NO. 4, DECEMBER 2016 (Gigahertz)
  • 13. WHAT WOULD THE HARDWARE LOOK LIKE? CARDS RACK VIRTUALIZED ETHERNET BACKPLANE CPU VIRTUALIZED CARDS / RACKS VIRTUALIZED CPU
  • 14. WHAT WOULD THE SOFTWARE LOOK LIKE?
  • 15. IS PLC VIRTUALIZATION A THREAT TO THE AUTOMATION VENDORS? A tale of two personal computer vendors …
  • 16. HOW DOES IT BENEFIT THE VENDORS? 01 Competitive Displacement 02 Focus on the Software 03 Market Share
  • 17. Thank you
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