The manufacturing industry is a crucial component of the Defense Industrial Base (DIB). One of the most interesting features of this sector in regard to safety and regulation is that not every employee working on the factory floor is behind a computer. A few employees, such as those on the factory floor, don’t really spend their days responding to e-mails, preparing inspection plans, or revamping documents. These front-line employees usually lack a devoted business-owned device but require access to company material.
Furthermore, industries in the DIB frequently deal with Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI), which is susceptible to CMMC 2.0 (Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification). Moreover, in several cases, this information is subject to International Trafficking and Arms Regulations (ITAR) which also adds a veneer of data retention limitations.
Understanding Factory Licensing:
A factory license is a means that authorizes employees to undertake operational tasks in manufacturing without compromising access to critical and discreet data. Creating the ideal balance in all the security controls, compliance, expenses, and staff workflow necessities means offering an adequate level of access, wherever relevant, thus restricting access to data.
The best approach to launching lower-level license strategies while satisfying regulatory standards is to carefully evaluate the data that users can have access to and the means by which they have to obtain it. One can specify who is and is not permitted to access CUI by explicitly indicating the level and technique of access. This, when paired with efficient governance approaches, has the potential to lower costs and possible attacks while remaining consistent. When choosing the best strategy for factory licensing for employees, companies need to consider the worker’s role and the information they should access.
Strategy 1: Absolutely No Access
Sometimes in some cases, businesses decide that employees do not require access to the company content. This is because their job does not necessitate the use of a device or information systems and others. This is simple and clear because no access implies that no licensing is required.
The benefits of this approach are that it lowers the user count, IT expenses, organizational load and attack susceptibility. The limitation is that upholding communications with employees can turn difficult. Even simple managerial messages today depend on holding personal email addresses and directing any concerns on conveying privacy-oriented data to the employees.
Strategy 2: Through Internal E-mail
There are a lot of cases in which a firm builds an e-mail profile for staff members but only uses it for internal emails. The primary objective here is to keep a channel open for organizational notifications and lower the likelihood of outward leaks and spills while avoiding the cost of a full license. In this case, the company will almost certainly forbid downloads and limit the equipment that can access e-mail.
The merit of this approach is that companies can launch a medium of touchpoints, mostly for organizational notices and inner workflows. Prohibiting external communications maintains the system boundary as data is not transferred outside of the organization and reduces the attack surface from external threats. The limitation is that the employees would not have an easy pass to units such as internal chat or cloud storage systems which makes it harder for them to take part in joint initiatives.
Strategy 3 – First Line Employee Access – Without CUI
In practice, most companies choose and require all personnel to have a certain degree of access to enterprise content. Even so, given their position, they may not require access to sensitive CUI data. Only e-mail, cloud storage, and other services are accessible in this type of situation. Nevertheless, administrative safeguards must be put in place to ensure that these users are not subjected to CUI. Data Encryption, Data classifying and identification, workspace guidelines, and security groups are some of the innovations used to assist this.
This is potentially the most difficult strategy to implement because the organization is mainly establishing a system boundary within the ecosystem and must customise techniques to effectively stop internal individuals from using CUI as need to know. Workers benefit from the ability to engage in non-CUI-oriented activities and cooperation. The limitation of this approach is that it imposes a substantial workload to set up and keep system boundaries inside the environment.
Strategy 4 – First line Employee CUI Access
Employees in this circumstance have complete access to the collaboration suite and are authorized to access CUI information. This enables the organization to keep the system boundaries at the environment’s perimeter and significantly reduces the workload of controlling the movement of CUI within the ecosystem. The benefit is that it reduces the workload considerably, allowing the spotlight to be on controlling and safeguarding the entire environment. On the downside, it is costlier to license.
Creating the right mix of safety, compliance, business needs, and licensing begins by determining what data users can and must access. The appropriate licensing approach can be positioned to obtain that balance when blended with the desire and power to build system boundaries within the working environment.
Our team at VLC Solutions has assisted several prominent defence industrial base clients in overcoming this obstacle as part of the digital and compliance transformation and we can assist you in developing the ideal licensing strategy for each of your employees. Contact us today to find out how we can assist you in developing the best licensing strategy for your factory employees.