An IKARUS success story.
An IKARUS success story.
The WITTMANN Group is a leading global manufacturer of injection moulding machines, robots and peripheral equipment for the plastics processing industry with headquarters in Vienna, Austria. Together, the group operates eight production plants in five countries and is represented in all the world’s essential plastics markets with their 34 additional sales companies. In total, the WITTMANN Group employs 2,415 people.
The two primary business divisions are WITTMANN BATTENFELD and WITTMANN.
WITTMANN BATTENFELD is pursuing the further expansion of its market position as an injection moulding machine manufacturer and specialist for advanced process technologies. As a supplier of modern, comprehensive machine technology in modular design, the company meets the plastics injection moulding market’s current and future requirements.
WITTMANN’s product range includes robots and automation systems, material supply systems, dryers, gravimetric and volumetric feeders, mills, temperature control and cooling units. With this comprehensive range of peripherals, WITTMANN offers plastics processors total solutions that cover all needs – from individual work cells to wholly integrated systems encompassing the entire production process.
The merger of the individual divisions under the WITTMANN Group’s common umbrella has led to the seamless complementation of the respective product lines to the benefit of plastics processors, who are increasingly demanding smooth interaction between processing machine, automation and peripherals.
Over the years and due to the diverse requirements, the WITTMANN Group’s IT structure has developed into a very complex entity that integrates both centralised and decentralised administration. The European production plants in Austria, Germany and Hungary are centrally managed and connected (via MPLS) to the head office. The other production sites have direct access to the systems at headquarters and interfaces that allow decentralised ERP systems integration. All WITTMANN-BATTENFELD subsidiaries/plants are equipped with the central CRM system, including various product configurators and data portals, and are managed directly from the head office. The IT networks are decentralised in all plants and branches but have largely identical hardware and software solutions to the head office. Janusz Russocki, IT Manager of the WITTMANN Group: “The different time zones and data synchronisation between external plants were focal points and challenges that had to be mastered. The development of a common understanding of the processes and market peculiarities also accompany us constantly and place additional demands on the IT.“
As a development and production site for machines and equipment for the plastics industry, large amounts of data worth protecting naturally accumulate, including development, design and production data, parts lists, prices, various calculations and computations about and for machine and equipment components, system and application programmes as well as customer or supplier data and the classic data processed in an ERP, CAD, CAE, CAM and CRM environment. Beyond this, the protection of processing machines in an industrial setting is also gaining importance in the age of Industry 4.0 and the progressive networking of devices in one’s own company or with customers. “For this purpose, we have developed our own ‘Wittmann 4.0’ solution for our product portfolio, which can consist of an upstream work cell control and a downstream injection moulding machine and numerous peripheral devices,” Janusz Russocki reports on the individual solution approach and adds: “Our own WITTMANN BATTENFELD injection moulding machines, WITTMANN robots and peripheral devices can be connected to the WITTMANN 4.0 work cell control. The connected devices are identified, authenticated and released for internal communication within the work cell.” The WITTMANN 4.0 work cell control also allows external communication to an MES or ERP system. The work cell control includes a restrictive firewall that analyses the ongoing communication and starts various security mechanisms in case of atypical behaviour. The WITTMANN 4.0 firewall has been tested and approved by an external IT security company.
In general, it can be said that the tasks and expenditures in the IT sector have fundamentally changed and expanded in recent years. The external security threats have increased so massively that a new IT positioning and IT prioritisation became necessary. Today, expenditure on IT infrastructure security is many times higher than ten years ago. The classic threat scenarios via e-mails or Internet access must be considered just as much as the development of understanding and the sensitisation of employees with regard to the security risks associated with the modern IT world and its global networking. Janusz Russocki: “Fraud attempts such as ‘fake president’ tricks or similar can only be avoided through the vigilance of employees because neither HW nor SW solutions alone are suitable for this. At the WITTMANN-BATTENFELD Group, different and independently acting HW and SW protection mechanisms are in place, which is selected, integrated, managed and continuously updated for this purpose”. All WITTMANN-BATTENFELD Group plants are prepared for a failure or disaster scenario and have redundancy of the data of all systems and state-of-the-art backup solutions.
Because of the tremendous potential threat posed by a large number of incoming e-mails, WITTMANN was looking for a suitable solution for its worldwide branches. “The cooperation with IKARUS came about – as is often the case – by chance,” recalls Janusz Russocki: “At a conference in Linz, DI Christoph Barszczewski from IKARUS gave a presentation on IT risks and threats, and that’s when the first contact was made, which then developed into excellent cooperation. “.
For years, all WITTMANN branches have been protected by IKARUS mail.security with ATP and “we rate it extremely positively”, Janusz Russocki sums up. It`s pleasing “that IKARUS Security Software reacts extremely quickly to local threats and has thus already saved us from countless attacks – it is a fixed component of our security concept”. The local proximity to IKARUS and the excellent cooperation with the IKARUS specialists bring many advantages that other manufacturers have not provided so far.
The effectiveness and necessity of IKARUS mail.security is demonstrated by the daily reports that document adequate protection against spam waves, mail Trojans, viruses and other threats, and have so far provided seamless protection worldwide and around the clock.
Janusz Russocki: “As our experience so far shows, the area of security in IT will inevitably have to evolve permanently, because there will never be 100% protection. In the meantime, a consistent and sustainable expansion of protective measures is becoming so important that the focus will be increasingly directed to the area of security in addition to classic IT core areas.“