Insite System Security

InSite-enabled remote access hardware is inherently more secure versus standard remote M2M access technologies. Typical M2M products utilize only a username and password to access a device in the system. With InSite's Secomea hardware, several additional layers of security are in place to prevent compromise of the system's security as well as prevent "man-in-the-middle" attacks.

In a normal M2M system using username and password access only, a lost or stolen password can mean unauthorized personnel accessing the system. With the InSite system, multiple security protocols and protection methods are employed to prevent this. In addition to user and password control, an x.509 certificate, issued by the Gate Manager administrator, and stored locally on the authorized user's computer, is used to provide encrypted end-to-end connections, of which both protects against man-in-the-middle attacks, and prevents unauthorized users providing stolen passwords to gain access to a system. In addition, the InSite system provides extensive auditing and access logging of remote access, of which access can be revoked at any time by the Gate Manager administrator. This can be used to track even authorized user's access into and out of the system.

Other products are vulnerable to the fact that a password or old access path can still be available, unless the user access is removed. The InSite system can be set up for a time-limited access, upon which the certificate is invalidated, such as necessary for vendor or contractor access. By utilizing x.509 certificate-based encryption on both ends of the connection, only devices and users tied into the Gate Manager server have access to the connections. All other ports into and out of the system are firewall protected.

Security measures such as these would have prevented attacks such as these described here:

In this case, a disgruntled vendor employee was able to dump thousands of gallons of sewage while sitting outside the plant with radio gear and the company's own stolen hardware. The employee had left the company a month earlier, and had used his insider knowledge of the system to gain access using that hardware and his inside knowledge of access methods.

With a system such as InSite, there would have been many methods in place to defeat this unauthorized access. The employee's x.509 certificate could have been invalidated upon loss of employment, and would have prevented access. Even if the system administrator had overlooked invalidating access, the extensive auditing and logging built into the system would have quickly prevented further access by noting the old user's access to the device, along with time and date stamping of the access. Access to a device can also initiate an SMS or email to designated personnel, which would also have quickly prevented this occurrence. These features are built into the InSite system's Secomea hardware.