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23 Jun 2022

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A new digital twin security maturity model helps protect digital economies

In digital economies, digital twins play an increasingly important role. These virtual copies of realworld facilities like data centers and edge facilities have become important tools for planning, managing and operating them. In many cases, digital twins are highly dependent on the data input provided by IoT devices. When deploying large numbers of IoT devices, security is obviously a major concern. The Digital Twin Consortium recently published a report that describes a maturity model for IoT-based digital twins in response to these challenges.

To enable trustworthy digital twins, the document 'IoT Security Maturity Model Digital Twin Profile' provides guidance to those designing and deploying digital twins. Given the complexity of the constantly changing security landscape, choosing where to focus limited security resources is a challenge for most organizations. IoT providers can use a Security Maturity Model (SMM) to determine where they need to be and how to invest in security mechanisms that meet their requirements without over-investing. Communities can expand the SMM by creating profiles that address industry and device specific concerns based on the general considerations in the SMM.

According to this model, security levels are measures of confidence that vulnerabilities are addressed appropriately and that the system functions as intended. In the SMM, the appropriate security level is not specified. It provides guidance and structure to help organizations identify considerations for different maturity levels appropriate for their industry and systems or facilities. Different levels of comprehensiveness and alignment with industry sectors and systems, are defined and accounted for. As a result of the model's guidance, some users create industry- and system-specific profiles that can be used by a broader audience, in conjunction with the model, to assess maturity in a specific vertical or use case.

The Digital Twin Consortium has published a number of documents to drive innovation and help digital economies deploy digital twin technology responsibly. The IoT Security Maturity Model Digital Twin Profile is the consortium's 7th publication. There is also a Glossary of Terms, a maturity model for digital twin infrastructure, and the Digital Twin Capabilities Periodic Table, which provides a framework for delivering digital twin projects.

Photo credit: Shahadat Rahman

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