Stefan Ditting

Product Manager Communication



For more than 15 years, Stefan Ditting has been a product manager at HIMA for the safe control system family HIMatrix and the area of industrial communication (Ethernet, SafeEthernet and field buses). In this context, he has been dealing with the topic of cybersecurity from the perspective of industrial automation since 2007. Stefan Ditting studied electrical engineering (special area: automation technology) at the BA Stuttgart until 1993. He then gained several years of practical experience as an automation engineer in the field of factory automation, worked as a trainer and later switched to product management.

“An Oxymoron of modern automation: safe separate integration”

Trying to collect all the buzzwords, concepts, ideas and technologies associated with Industry 4.0 would certainly challenge endless discussions. From increased profitability to new business models to social responsibility, from artificial intelligence to determinism, from Safety to Security and so forth comprehensive solutions are developed. These solutions contain partly contradictory requirements that need to be resolved. In addition, I4 solutions are becoming significantly more complex due to the strong interaction between the technologies. This complexity should be reduced in favour of the maintenance of I4 solutions.

One way to achieve this and support stability is to separate systems. This separation is established in automation security and functional security. The basic prerequisite for separation while maintaining the efficiency of the I4 solutions is the interoperability of the systems. This applies to a wide range from local real-time communication to reliable data exchange over long distances. For this reason, secure data exchange also plays an important role in I4 solutions. In this article, the role of functionally secure communication in a secure environment is examined in more detail and requirements to be met are formulated.