Resilient Communication Systems Increase the Security of Digital Processes in Industry

Communication systems are the basis for digitalization in business and society. They form the central nervous system of the digitally networked world. Failures, technical faults or attacks in these transmission systems jeopardize the cooperation of automated processes. For example, mechanical damage can occur during the transfer of workpieces if two robots do not cooperate with each other at the same time. Or there is a risk of production downtime if communication links between connected processes are interrupted. The aim of research and development is therefore to explore the future use of connected communication systems such as 6G mobile communications, industrial bus systems and IP-based connections, and to develop new technological approaches to prevent disruptions and accelerate the resumption of disrupted data connections.

The core objective of the project "Resilient communication systems with high availability of networks and devices" (RILKOSAN) is to increase the resilience of industrial communication systems. To this end, the researchers are developing measures against external interference or subsystem failures. To this end, methods for the automatic detection of anomalies in data transmission are being researched and developed. Based on this, an overarching architecture will be developed that allows monitoring and the initiation of suitable countermeasures at the same time. In the event of a total failure, methods are integrated into the novel architecture that allow data transmission to restart safely. In addition, the researchers are integrating a hardware-based fault-resilient security module into the new architecture, which supports authentication, encryption and availability of high data rates between individual devices and the network components.

The innovative solution approach in the RILKOSAN project is to combine sensitive monitoring of different internal and external interference factors while analyzing the instantaneous characteristics of the communication infrastructure. Together with an AI-based intrusion detection, a hardware-based security module and intelligent recovery mechanisms, a resilient overall architecture is created. The project results help to build resilient communication systems and thus strengthen the security of economy and society as well as technological sovereignty in Germany and Europe.

The RILKOSAN project is a cooperation of consider it GmbH, Giesecke & Devrient GmbH, Krohne Innovation GmbH, U-Glow and the Institutes of Computer Engineering and IT Security at the University of Lübeck.

This project is funded by the BMBF under grant number 16KISR010K.