IEC 62443 – What is it, and why do you need to start thinking about it?

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Written by Gareth Chamberlain, Product Manager- Cyber Security & IT Automation

Looking into the market space in the UK there are two types of engineer. The forward-thinking professional who is consistently looking for new technologies which will benefit them and ultimately the organisation. The other type is the engineer is of “now”, happy with using what they know and finds it hard to try new technologies whether it is because of specification challenges or the company ethos.

These two mind-sets will soon need to be thinking about IEC 62243 as the standard is gradually developed and starting to be thought about in the public space. While not all the IEC 62443 sections have passed peer review, and some have not entered the development stage, companies need to start investigating how these standards will affect the running and development of the brand and structure of the company.

IEC 62443 is not solely meant for targeting hackers and malware on your network. It is designed to be an all-encompassing ethos of procedures and checks from every level of the organisation from the hardware and end users to policies and asset registers. It is about understanding what hardware and what interactions they have, but the most important part of the standard is how to recognise a threat, how to report it and, most vitally, how to respond and to recover.

IEC 62443 comes in 4 sections and break down into:-

  1. Section 1 – End user and physical security
  2. Section 2 – Policy / Asset Registers and Recovery
  3. Section 3 – Application and Risk Assessments
  4. Section 4 – Vendor and Hardware

Where Phoenix Contact comes in its own is that we are already thinking about this from a vendor’s perspective also policymakers’ and the end user’s. All our new network products are IEC 62443 section 4 approved. We have also developed the PSIRT (Product Security Incident Response Team) where we give engineers/policymakers and end users a platform to see what vulnerabilities have been found and the best way to rectify them. We have also an extensive list of application examples and datasheets to help the integrator develop a solution.

Phoenix Contact also provides services to help your organisation become IEC 62443 compliant. We can help you design and retrofit applications that will be fully IEC 62443 ready. If you are interested in more information. Contact myself directly or visit the Phoenix Contact website. Click here for the Phoenix Contact White paper.

For more information, contact Gareth on 07946 757375 or email



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