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NIST Meeting: Cybersecurity Is a Key Ingredient In the Manufacturing Mix

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is bringing experts together to discuss the cybersecurity challenges faced by the rapidly developing field of direct digital manufacturing (DDM) and to discuss methods for improvement. The Feb. 3, 2015, meeting at the NIST Gaithersburg campus will inform NIST's future efforts in the area.

DDM uses computer-controlled processes to streamline manufacturing by cutting out time-consuming and costly steps such as developing precise molds or cutting dies. Additive manufacturing and 3-D printing are some of the most well-known examples of DDM and are used to create physical objects directly from digital files. Today the technology is used to create a variety of products including bone replacements, airplane parts and even action figures using one's very own image. In the future, it may be possible to "print" virtually anything you could want, from food to complex electronic components.

NIST conducts research in both additive manufacturing and cybersecurity. This meeting is aimed at researchers in both areas, as well as stakeholders who use or build DDM machines and software. The goals are to develop a greater understanding of cybersecurity risks in DDM, to discover how cybersecurity needs for DDM technologies differ from those of traditional industrial control systems or cyber-physical machines, to understand the approaches and solutions stakeholders such as software developers, product designers and manufacturers are using, and to identify areas where NIST can assist in building security into this developing technology rather than adding it on after the fact.

The symposium will explore cybersecurity needs for DDM, including ensuring the protection of intellectual property and the integrity of printers, elements being printed and design data. Speakers from industry, academia and government will discuss the industry's current state, cybersecurity risks and solutions, and implications for information and communications technology supply chain risk management. Experts will share lessons learned, and participants will assist in identifying specific vulnerabilities and presenting possible solutions or ways forward.

To register and learn more details for "Cybersecurity for Direct Digital Manufacturing," please see the event page.

Released January 20, 2015, Updated February 2, 2023