As the aviation and airline industry transitions to the digital and electronic, there is no shortage of stories or events concerning data breaches. Unfortunately, these episodes are proving to be increasing in complication via the evolution of connectivity and applications given our wireless environment.
Within this contemporary paradigm, there is a lack relating to a standard policy to tackle this emergent and maturing issue. From year to year the question of cyber security is transitioning from omnipresent to everlasting – a simple fact of modern life in a wired world.
Presently there is a great deal of excitement in aviation concerning connectivity, big data, data analytics and the new e-enabled aircraft, specifically modern models from Boeing and Airbus. Current and contemporary aircraft are designed to provide an in-depth detailed view of aircraft and engine health – thus a revolutionary change from older service types. As the online environment continues to change rapidly, companies are often confronted with new threats to their operations. Significantly, the deployment of new advanced technologies and communication systems has created a shift from manual to automated, therefore inadvertently opening the door to malicious interest.
The e-Enabled aircraft crosses a host of borders within an airline. The potential to completely connect a company from Engineering to Finance, from Flight Operations to Information Technology, where decision makers from across the company can communicate their vision of how a given asset should be operated. This creates a flat organization where efficiency and saving can be identified. The advent of SWIM (System Wide Information Management) where seamless communication is the essence of the program, the e-Enabled aircraft is a corner stone.
With these technical progressions, cyber security will be the leading chapter in the next stage of aircraft and avionics design. Take the simple premise that the more connected an entity is the more aware they need to be of cyber security and its associated menace.
Mr. Atholl Buchan
Safety Operations & Infrastructure
International Air Transport Association
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