Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Construction Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructure Protection: Significance, Overlaps, and Proposed Action Plan

Version 1 : Received: 10 May 2020 / Approved: 12 May 2020 / Online: 12 May 2020 (12:44:01 CEST)

How to cite: García de Soto, B.; Georgescu, A.; Mantha, B.; Turk, Ž.; Maciel, A. Construction Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructure Protection: Significance, Overlaps, and Proposed Action Plan. Preprints 2020, 2020050213 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202005.0213.v1). García de Soto, B.; Georgescu, A.; Mantha, B.; Turk, Ž.; Maciel, A. Construction Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructure Protection: Significance, Overlaps, and Proposed Action Plan. Preprints 2020, 2020050213 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202005.0213.v1).

Abstract

The umbrella concept for the current efforts to digitize construction is known as Construction 4.0. One of its key concepts is cyber-physical systems. The construction industry is not only creating increasingly valuable digital assets (in addition to physical ones) but also the buildings and built infrastructures are increasingly monitored and controlled using digital technology. Both make construction a vulnerable target of cyber-attacks. While the damage to digital assets, such as designs and cost calculations, may result in economic damage, attacks on digitally-controlled physical assets may damage the well-being of occupants and, in worst-case scenarios, even damage (or death) to the users. The problem is amplified by the emerging cyber-physical nature of the systems, where the human checks may be left out. We propose that construction learns from the work done in the context of critical infrastructures (CI). First, a lot of CI is construction-related, and the process of designing and building it must be secured accordingly. Second, while most assets may not be critical in the CI sense, they are critical to the operations of a business and the lives of citizens. In the end, we recommend some steps so that well-established processes of critical infrastructure protection trickle down to make Construction 4.0 and the built environment more cyber-secure. With that in mind, we describe the possible inclusion of Construction 4.0 considerations into existing critical infrastructure protection (CIP) frameworks with minimum frictions. We also propose some suggestions regarding possible future courses of action to improve the increasingly vulnerable cyber-security environment of the built environment across all life cycle phases - design, construction, operation, maintenance, and end of life.

Subject Areas

BIM; construction; critical infrastructure; cybersecurity; cyber-physical systems; digital twin; EPCIP; Industry 4.0

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